US Marshals serve CEOs of X and Discord with congressional subpoenas ahead of Big Tech child safety hearing | #childsafety | #kids | #chldern | #parents | #schoolsafey


Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

The US Capitol in Washington, DC, on October 9, 2023.



CNN
 — 

Tech CEOs are once again being summoned to Congress to testify about their business practices — and this time, the US Marshals Service is getting involved.

On Monday, the Senate Judiciary Committee said it had subpoenaed three top social media executives — X CEO Linda Yaccarino, Snap CEO Evan Spiegel and Discord CEO Jason Citron — for a Dec. 6 hearing on children’s online safety and content moderation.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg and TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew are also expected to testify at the hearing, albeit voluntarily without a subpoena, the lawmakers added in a release, saying that discussions with those companies are ongoing.

US Marshals were forced to deliver subpoenas personally to Yaccarino and Citron after the companies declined to accept the summons on their behalf, the committee said, describing the companies’ response as a “remarkable departure from typical practice.”

The hearing’s topic reflects policymakers’ steady and mounting criticism against social media companies over everything from hosting extremist speech to allegedly harming the mental health of teen users.

“At our February hearing on protecting children’s safety online, we promised Big Tech that they’d have their chance to explain their failures to protect kids. Now’s that chance,” said Sens. Dick Durbin and Lindsey Graham, the committee’s top Democrat and Republican, in a statement.

In a statement, X said it has been cooperating with the committee.

“We have been working in good faith to participate in the Judiciary committee’s hearing on child protection online as safety is our top priority at X,” said Wifredo Fernandez, head of US & Canada government affairs at X. “Today we are communicating our updated availability to participate in a hearing on this important issue.”

Discord said in a statement that “keeping our users safe, especially young people, is central to everything we do.”

“We have been actively engaging with the Committee on how we can best contribute to this important industry discussion,” Discord added. “We welcome the opportunity to work together as an industry and with the Committee.”

Meta declined to comment; the other companies didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

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