CA State Senator Proposes Legislation To Require "Social Media" [broadly defined] Websites To Develop "Strategic Plan" To "Verify News Stories" To "Mitigate Spread of False Information" Using "Fact Checkers" And Place "Warnings" On News Stories "Containing False Information"
|(April 9, 2018) -- State Senator Richard Pan (D, Sacramento) has proposed legislation (SB 1424) that would require [legislative counsel digest] any person who operates a social media [defined in the bill, see text below] Internet Web site with a physical presence in California to develop a strategic plan to verify news stories shared on its Web site. The bill would require the plan to include, among other things, a plan to mitigate the spread of false information through news stories, the utilization of fact-checkers to verify news stories, providing outreach to social media users, and placing a warning on a news story containing false information."
[SB 1424 bill text] (a) Any person who operates a social media Internet Web site with physical presence in California shall develop a strategic plan to verify news stories shared on its Internet Web site.
|For example, an independent expenditure committee recently surfaced calling itself "Long Beach Public Safety to Support Dines for City Council 2018." When LBREPORT.com did some checking (reported here), we found that the group's contributors consisted of three union PACs (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 11, Southern CA Pipe Trades District Council 16 and International Longshore and Warehouse Union Foreman's Local 94.) Yes, it's possible that these three unions suddenly became focused on public safety, but we think it's more likely that they're supporting Mr. Dines because he's an ILWU Marine Clerk with Local 63, and for many years was a member of ILWU Local 13's Executive Board and Political Action Committee.
The CA Secretary of State's website indicates AnimalPAC had less than $500 cash on hand as of Dec. 31, 2017. AnimalPAC.org's website indicates it supports a number of pro-animal/pro-environment policies but it doesn't identify any person(s) in charge. So who's running the outfit and (very important) making its social network deployed endorsement decisions? That's the "who" and the "what" of the story.
Yesterday (April 7), No Kill Long Beach reported much of the "who" and the "what" that the PT piece didn't. In a release, it indicated that the individual whose personal Facebook page says he "manages" AnimalPac.org is also the CA Democratic Party's Executive Board member for 66th Assembly District (south bay). AnimalPAC's treasurer is also treasurer for LB Councilman Roberto Uranga's re-election campaign. The Center for Responsive Politics website also indicates Uranga's treasurer is also treasurer for about half a dozen other Dem PACS.
AnimalPAC's Facebook page indicates that in March 2018, it gave a $1,000 donation to "Kitty Devore Rescue," an all-volunteer nonprofit charity focused on rescuing cats from the Devore Shelter in San Bernardino. Among those highlighted at the photo-op event were state Senator Kevin deLeon [Dem running for U.S. Senate against incumbent Dem Dianne Feinstein], Assemblyman Jose Solorio (former Dem Assemblyman, lost 2014 state Senate race to Repub Janet Nguyen, elected to Santa Ana City Council, now running for Santa Ana Mayor) and state Senator Josh Newman, a Dem narrowly elected in 2016 to a district straddling parts of eastern L.A.-OC and western SB counties. Senator Newman is currently facing a June 5, 2018 recall election for having voted for Sac'to Dems' gasoline tax hike. If voters recall Dem Newman and replace him with a Repub, Dems will lose their 2/3 Sac'to supermajority.
Pretty slick, huh?
Knowledge is power, so now that you know the "who" and "what" that the PT piece didn't report, connect the LB dots. No Kill Long Beach, a non-partisan grassroots animal-advocacy group that from its inception hasn't flinched at criticizing incumbents on policy grounds, gave incumbent LB Mayor Garcia and Councilmembers Uranga and Price (all Dems) poor ratings in the April 10 election while giving high ratings to challengers (also all Dems) Jared Milrad (7th dist), Gordana Kajer (3rd dist.) and Rich Dines (5th dist.) Meanwhile, AnimalPAC, with no record we can find online criticizing Dem incumbents on animal policy grounds, has endorsed LB Dem incumbents Garcia, Price and Uranga.
Elections matter, and we believe reporting the "who" and "what" of this story is important.
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