The 2020 election outcome presents Facebook, Twitter and other online platforms with a worst-case scenario for misinformation management even as it takes some of the regulatory pressure off the wider tech industry.
Why it matters: Aggravated red state/blue state grievances look to usher in an open-ended era of partisan trench warfare online – but a split Congress shrinks the likelihood of new laws reining in tech’s power.
The big picture: For the past two years, the tech industry’s biggest threat from the political sphere lay in regulation and antitrust enforcement.
- That threat remains. But the election outcome points to a world in which a divided government is less likely to pursue a coordinated regulatory effort – while a divided nation forces the industry into ever more bruising dilemmas over what to do about problematic content online.
Be smart: Tech leaders hoped that the election would represent a peak in their political role, after which they could return to business as usual.
- Facebook CE