Despite the fierce opposition to sensible internet regulations by America’s far right, Obama bravely doubled down in the fight against fake news last Friday by signing the Countering Foreign Propaganda And Disinformation Act into law. The act finally gives the Department Of Defense and various intelligence agencies the tools they need to fight back against Russian propaganda and misinformation circulating on alternative media sites such as Infowars, Zerohedge and Breitbart. Despite the opposition to these regulations by large misguided sections of the American populace, the bill passed with an overwhelming majority in both the House and Senate.
Among the many provisions in the act, the State Department is authorized to crack down on media outlets deemed to be fake news or foreign propaganda. In order to make such a determination, the department will draw upon the expertise of senior defense and intelligence authorities, as well as the Broadcasting Board Of Governors and various other officials. The Broadcasting Board Of Governors consists of roughly four Republicans and four Democrats to ensure that the panel remains objective and non-partisan. The act authorizes these government agencies to actively promote fact-based accredited narratives that are in line with US interests and policy objectives. In addition, funding has been allocated to help train journalists, NGOs and other private entities to identify and counter fake news and disinformation.
This act officially gives America the most advanced media framework in the world, by empowering senior authorities to guide, influence and block narratives to help keep audiences as informed as possible. This will greatly improve the quality of information available to American citizens, as well as citizens of other countries who consume media affected by this legislation. Although there is significant objection among the few who are aware of this act, it’s safe to say that as people start reaping the benefits of widely available, high quality accredited news, they will soon come to appreciate the importance of this legislation. It’s time for us to band together as progressives to fight toxic disinformation and get behind this bold attempt by the Obama administration to protect Americans from fake news. The future of America depends on it.