After 10 years of iPhone, calls for government to regulate video uploads, livestreaming
WASHINGTON (ABC7) —
Monday marks 10 years since the iPhone, a revolutionary device, was introduced to the world.
Among its many features, it's made it possible for people to instantly upload videos or livestream events. But due to the type of events recently being uploaded, calls have surfaced for the government to pass regulations.
The videos are seen in real time all around the world - and many are disturbing. In August, a Minnesota man is fatally shot by police as his girlfriend is posting to Facebook.
Last week, four people were charged with hate crimes after they used Facebook Live to broadcast themselves beating, taunting and threatening a mentally disabled 18-year-old man – all while cussing the President Elect.
With anyone being able to watch live on their phones and computers - some have called upon the federal government to step in and regulate.
"I think that's a really slippery slope,” said Carl Szabo of NetChoice, which advocates for a free internet.
Szabo says the government could attempt to regulate, but it would not be able to keep up with technological innovation. As soon as a law is passed, he says, that technology could be obsolete.
"You're beginning to look at issues of free speech and the intrusion on free speech by governmental entities. So it's very dangerous,” added Szabo.
"The private sector is going to figure this out. Facebook is going to figure this out," stated David Williams with the Taxpayers Protection Alliance.
Williams doesn't think the government will even get an opportunity to have hearings and draft legislation. He believes Facebook and other technology companies are already working on solutions - which he believes are just months away.
"Facebook will take down this feature in a couple of months … take it down, figure out what to do, how to police it and bring it back up. This is not sustainable. What they are doing is not sustainable. Everyone is going to try to get their 15 minutes of fame - we've seen it already,” concluded Williams.