California bill seeks internet control in the name of fighting “bots”
California Assemblyman Marc Levine, who is a Democrat(and a Hillary shill), is introducing a bill that seeks government intervention when it comes to dealing with ‘nefarious’ internet bots that are apparently hellbent on spreading misinformation and committing ad fraud.
A noble cause indeed, but are the people of California really going to trust the California Democrats that after 7 years in power have failed to deal with the homeless problem? The same Democrats that have failed to deal with the illegal immigration epidemic? The same Democrats that have overseen massive spikes in rent and electricity prices? The same Democrats that think its “no big deal” that the FBI interfered in an election?
Yes. Those very same Democrats want to control the internet and are actively taking steps towards that goal.
Assembly Bill 1950 reads:
“require that bots are linked to a verified human and that all advertising purchases on social media to be made by verified human accounts.”…”require an operator of a social media Internet Web site with a physical presence in California to require an account or profile it hosts on its Internet Web site that it identifies as being controlled by a computer software account or user that performs an automated task to be linked to a natural person.”
The main problem with the bill? It doesn’t exactly distinguish between bots that do normal work, like automated emails, and the much smaller percentage of bots that are doing dirty work, like devastating DDoS attacks.
The bill also comes at a time when social media giants are already dealing with the bots on their websites and as we have seen, attempts to purge bots inadvertently seem to hurt Conservative accounts. I really don’t think this bill would do anything to help our cause in fighting social media censorship of Conservatives.
The bills aim seems to be granting the government a foothold in regulating the internet in the name of fighting “bots”.
According to a report from a research group called Incapsula, nearly 52% of all internet traffic is bots completing various tasks. Of that 52% of internet bot activity, about 25% can be considered malicious bots that could potentially steal your information or hack a website. The people who are most at risk from bot attacks are website owners and advertisers. Over 90% of websites have experienced some sort of hack attempt.
(a) The Legislature hereby finds and declares that hackers and others now have the ability to sell advertisements on Web sites using computer programs called “bots” that can mimic human behavior to make it appear as though real people are visiting the Web sites and clicking on advertisements.
It doesn’t quite say what exact report they are getting their information from, but I believe it is the Incapsula report and other sources that Levin is referencing. I found multiple reports from different sources about companies using bots to click the ads on their website and sell ad revenue.
The publisher of Newsweek and the International Business Times were accused by BuzzfeedNews of buying bots to visit their website and click on adverts in an effort to secure a deal with a US government agency. The trick worked. They secured the deal and no legal consequences can hurt them because presently there is no actual law against ad fraud.
I found some reports of hackers using bots to take control of entire networks of computers and using them to infect other computers, that can generate spam and even use the computers to help commit ad fraud.
So while there is a very legitimate argument to be made in trying to stop the use of these malicious bots and preventing ad fraud, I simply don’t think this state government can do it properly. The bill as it stands will have major “unintended consequences” and inadvertently hurt smaller websites and startups.
READ Earlier this month, GitHub was hit with the largest recorded DDoS attack ever. Experts say brace for more attacks.
But businesses frequently use retweet bots that crawl Twitter for any mention of their business. These bots can reply to messages in real-time without the reliance on a human and they can be very useful tools. Indeed the internet as we know it would not exist without the use of bots.
^Forgive me if I don’t quite trust this man to regulate the internet.^
Businesses use bots to automate sending emails and replies, to sign people up for memberships, processing payments and even something as simple as choosing your Netflix queue requires the use of bots. Just like Islam, not all bots are bad. So while malicious bots and hackers are a problem, a sweeping piece of legislation on the use of bots could have very problematic effects if not done properly.
(a) As used in this section, “social media” means an electronic service or account, or electronic content, including, but not limited to, videos, still photographs, blogs, video blogs, podcasts, instant and text messages, email, online services or accounts, or Internet Web site profiles or locations.
Sure, perhaps mega tech companies like Facebook and Google can handle the effects of a bill like this, but the average person, small business, or startup is going to have to fork out extra cash and time now to verify every single person that is interacting with their website or social media account.
(b) An operator of a social media Internet Web site with a physical presence in California shall verify whether an account or profile it hosts on its Internet Web site is being controlled by a computer software account or user that performs an automated task, and if so, prominently indicate that to users of its Internet Web site.
This part of the bill is very important and it is essentially instituting forced verification for social media websites. The bill isn’t very clear on what constitutes an “account or profile it hosts on its Internet Web Site”, if someone comments, on my website, follows me or creates an account, will I required by law to verify that it is an actual person?
Do you trust this open-border lover, Hillary Clinton puppet, to regulate your website? Because I sure as hell don’t.
It’s not enough the Democrats want to control every single aspect of our lives, from our wages to our 2nd amendment, they have to be in control of the internet too?! We need to make sure people like Assemblyman Marc Levine stay out of our internet!!
Internet users can regulate the internet through free-market measures like boycotts and appealing to the tech-companies. People like Marc Levine pretend they are super heroes fighting for the little guy, when in reality they seek to destroy or control every aspect of our lives.
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