We need a robust free press and exchange of information. But we should face the reality that fake news and misinformation spread via social media threatens to undermine our democracy and may make it impossible for citizens to make informed decisions on a shared set of facts. This is particularly problematic given that foreign actors, particularly Russia, intend to do us harm and capitalize on our freedom of information. We need to start monitoring and punishing bad actors to give the determined journalists a chance to do their work.
Problems to be Solved
- Fake news and misinformation, particularly from foreign actors, threaten to undermine our democracy and ability to make informed decisions.
- Stories are increasingly subject to market incentives that reward sensationalism and discourage thoughtful treatment.
- Mistrust of media is at an all-time high, making it very difficult to form a consensus on solutions or common goals.
- Disincentives to publish inflammatory information are weak or nonexistent.
As President, I will…
- Imbue the FCC with a new office of the News and Information Ombudsman whose role it will be to investigate complaints of deliberate, persistent and destructive misinformation published by media companies and on social media, with a particular priority of curbing any foreign actors posing as citizens and impose fines as necessary.