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California bills aim at social media, medical disinformation

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Posted at 11:34 AM, Feb 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-16 11:34:50-05

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Two California Democratic lawmakers are targeting pandemic disinformation they say has received a broad audience and misplaced credibility through social media.

Both legislators rejected concerns Tuesday that their legislation might carry free speech or business privacy considerations.

Sen. Richard Pan’s proposal would require online platforms like Facebook to publicly disclose how their algorithms work and how they promote user content.

Assemblyman Evan Low's bill would label doctors’ promoting of misinformation or disinformation about COVID-19 to the public as unprofessional conduct that could draw disciplinary action.

The bill's supporters say say social media has given a tiny minority of doctors an outsized voice in dissuading people from being vaccinated.