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New NPR Chief: First Amendment an Obstacle in Fighting 'Disinformation'

April 18, 2024 (EIRNS)—Katherine Maher, the new chief of National Public Radio (NPR) in the U.S., had explained in a 2021 interview hosted by the Atlantic Council why the First Amendment is an obstacle in addressing such online “harms” as “disinformation,” an effort that she believes must include efforts by the government itself.

On the side of governmental regulation, the number one challenge here that we see is of course the First Amendment in the United States, [which] is a fairly robust protection of rights. And that is a protection of rights both for platforms, which I actually think is very important, that platforms have those rights to be able to regulate what kind of content goes up on their sites. But it also means it’s a little tricky to really address some of the real challenges of where does bad information come from and sort of the influence peddlers who have made a real market economy around it.

Maher is formerly the CEO and executive director of Wikimedia and is a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab—one of the world’s most fervent supporters of censorship in the name of protecting people from “harm” (i.e., conflicting political ideas). She is also a former board member of the Signal Foundation (which is supposedly committed to privacy and freedom of information) and of the U.S. Department of State’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board. She is now the president and CEO of NPR.

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