In a new interview with “The Atlantic” published Monday, former President Obama is asked “Is this new malevolent information architecture bending the moral arc away from justice?”
Obama answers “I think it is the single biggest threat to our democracy. I think Donald Trump is a creature of this, but he did not create it. He may be an accelerant of it, but it preceded him and will outlast him.”
Asked if tech companies are responsible, Obama replies “I don’t hold the tech companies entirely responsible, because this predates social media. It was already there. But social media has turbocharged it. I know most of these folks. I’ve talked to them about it. The degree to which these companies are insisting that they are more like a phone company than they are like The Atlantic, I do not think is tenable. They are making editorial choices, whether they’ve buried them in algorithms or not.”
Obama then asserts “The First Amendment doesn’t require private companies to provide a platform for any view that is out there.”
“At the end of the day, we’re going to have to find a combination of government regulations and corporate practices that address this, because it’s going to get worse. If you can perpetrate crazy lies and conspiracy theories just with texts, imagine what you can do when you can make it look like you or me saying anything on video. We’re pretty close to that now,” Obama adds.