Warner tells online platforms: be fair, or be subject to WV Campaign Finance Laws

PRESS RELEASE:

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – In a letter, sent Thursday, to five of the country’s largest online platforms, WV Secretary of State Mac Warner issued an advisory cautioning the companies to avoid procedures or policies that do not treat candidates fairly and equally.

Warner serves as West Virginia’s chief elections officer. Over the last several years, he has repeatedly asked for fair treatment of all candidates and expressed concern over online platforms’ activities that potentially affect the outcome of elections. Warner believes platforms should remain neutral. Otherwise, the platforms may be required to comply with state laws relating to campaign finance disclosure and regulation.

“When it comes to elections, online platforms have a responsibility to ensure equal treatment and fairness to all users. Online platforms must be neutral, or they should disclose their activities that have no reasonable interpretation other than sway users’ perceptions about elections and candidates,” Warner said.

Warner sent the letter to Facebook/Meta, Google, Truth Social, Twitter, and Rumble. A copy of the letter can be read HERE.

Warner told the online platforms that promoting candidates, either intentionally or via algorithm, may be considered a disclosable action according to the election laws of West Virginia. 

“Therefore, be advised that my Office will enforce all campaign finance laws triggered by online companies’ activities that do not uniformly apply to or equally impact candidates or political parties in West Virginia. This includes deplatforming, non-uniform or subjective message dissemination, and unilateral suppression or amplification of political messages or profiles,” Warner said.

Facebook
Twitter
Reddit
Email

Related stories

Miranda Huffman & Pam Harders

When a high-pressure water line burst inside a housing unit for senior citizens—during a power outage, nonetheless—two neighbors came to the rescue. Miranda Huffman and

Give us your feedback