WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- The House panel investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection on the U.S. Capitol has requested documents from several online platforms and forums.
- The request asked for records regarding misinformation related to the 2020 election and attempts to overturn the results.
- The investigation aims to thoroughly look into how the mob managed to infiltrate the Capitol.
Social media companies have received requests for records regarding the U.S. Capitol riot and the events leading up to it, as part of the House panel’s investigation on the Jan. 6 insurrection.
The House panel issued requests to the social media giants: Google, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Tiktok. Requests were also made to other platforms and forums such as Reddit, 4chan, 8kun, Parler, and Telegram.
A total of 15 companies were asked to provide records of any reports, studies, reviews, or analyses regarding the following subjects: misinformation related to the 2020 election, foreign influence in the election, efforts to stop the election certification, and “domestic violent extremists” linked to attempts to overturn the 2020 election, including the Capitol riot.
Facebook responded in an email, “We have received the request and look forward to continuing to work with the committee.”
The request was also acknowledged by Google, which also owns YouTube.
The company confirmed their cooperation, stating, “The events of January 6 were unprecedented and tragic, and Google and YouTube strongly condemn them. We’re committed to protecting our platforms from abuse, including by rigorously enforcing our policies for content related to the events of January 6.”
Twitter, meanwhile, has yet to comment about the request.
The investigation aims to thoroughly look into how the mob managed to infiltrate the Capitol and disrupt the certification of Joe Biden’s presidential victory.
Similar document requests were made earlier this week from law enforcement, intelligence, and other government agencies.
So far, the largest request made was to the National Archives for information on former President Donald Trump and his former team — a request that was challenged by Trump as a violation of “long-standing legal principles of privilege.”
The committee also plans to look into who was aware of the unfolding riot and when they were made aware of it. To accomplish this, they are considering requesting telecommunications companies to preserve phone records of several people — including members of Congress.
The Jan. 6 riot caused more than $1 million in damage, wounded dozens of police officers, and had members of Congress and then-vice president Mike Pence running for their lives.