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Republicans Question Biden Official On “Disinformation” Group That Blacklisted Conservative News Outlets

If you’re tired of censorship and surveillance, join Reclaim The Net.

A senior Biden administration representative was recently questioned in a congressional hearing by the Republican members over allegations about the federal government funding an organization that allegedly deprives conservative media platforms of advertising revenue under the guise of purging disinformation. The organization, called the Global Disinformation Index (GDI), is a UK-based think tank that flags suspected sources of disinformation, compelling advertisers to blacklist these sources, thereby threatening their financial sustainability.

The questioning unfolded in the backdrop of a hearing held by the House Foreign Affairs Committee led by the GOP. They contend that the government-funded Global Engagement Center (GEC) of the State Department, handed over a grant of $100,000 to the GDI in 2021.

The GDI has become a point of contention for congressional members due to its censorship measures. The organization has flagged several media outlets, including the New York Post, as disseminators of “disinformation.”

The accountability hearing had Republicans like Representative Darrell Issa question GEC’s Acting Coordinator Daniel Kimmage on whether these popular outlets, targeted by the GDI, were really spreading disinformation. Kimmage responded by stating that the GEC does not get involved in matters concerning US media outlets or domestic affairs.

However, when confronted with the question of GEC funding the London-based GDI, Kimmage admitted to the funding but clarified it was only for specific works targeted at Russian and People’s Republic of China narratives in languages other than English. Yet, the GOP lawmakers have continued to argue that the taxpayer funds are indirectly supporting the GDI’s blacklisting activities in the US.

In a period where concerns over free speech and censorship have become increasingly prevalent, the funding extended to entities like the GDI, which tiptoe the line between fact-checking and ideological bias, raises valid queries eerily resonating with the ongoing debate on censorship versus free speech. Notably, at the heart of the controversy is the question of third-party bias and transparency, and whether the act of flagging media outlets as dispensers of “disinformation” contributes to the suppression of certain types of content or perspectives.

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