French lawmaker: ‘I will do whatever I have to do’ to stop Russian ‘fake news’
French lawmakers have been accused of using the term “fake news” to justify censoring news on Facebook, Twitter and other platforms.
The term “faux pas” is now commonly used to refer to news articles that are “not real news,” according to a new report by Le Figaro, an influential French newspaper.
In an interview with French broadcaster BFMTV, lawmaker Olivier Bouliot said that he will not “expect” any “legitimate news” on social media platforms to be banned.
“I have seen the situation and I’m not surprised.
I’m just doing what I have been doing,” Boulot said.”
The situation has reached this stage.
I can do whatever the situation demands.”
While Facebook has so far resisted calls to ban fake news stories, the French government has been quick to take action.
The government has imposed a ban on “fake or misleading news,” and last week it also banned “fake accounts” and “fake Facebook groups” for five years.
Last month, French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said the government was “not going to tolerate” “fake” news on social networks.
He said the French authorities were “not afraid” of being sued by social media companies, though Facebook declined to comment on the allegations.
The French government and social media giants are currently fighting a court battle over the country’s controversial new data-retention laws.
The legislation has come under fire from civil liberties advocates and human rights groups, who say the law is unnecessary and could be used to monitor political and social activity.
“We will not allow ourselves to be used as a pawn in the battle against the fake news, which is a crime in France,” Ayraut said at a press conference.