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Sumners Students Consider Whether "Big Tech" Needs More Regulation

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On Friday, Oct. 20, Sumners Scholars attended an Institute for Policy Innovation Sumners Distinguished Lecture Series discussion entitled "Does 'Big Tech' Need More Regulation?" The lunch panel, held at the Hilton Anatole in downtown Dallas, had participants from across the political and policy spectrum.  

At the conclusion of the larger session, Sumners Scholars met one-on-one with panel member Jessica Melugin, Director of the Center for Technology and Innovation at the Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C. Students expressed a concern over the difficulty of reaching any political consensus around the issue of big-tech regulation in the current D.C. climate. Melugin suggested that rather than attempting to have government regulate online content or what "free speech" means in an online environment, Americans should consider their own traditions. By that, "If Americans argue that the liberal democratic system is god- or nature-given, they ought to trust the decision-makers in that system — themselves — rather than assign the role of content regulator to the government." By doing the latter, she said, they ultimately loose freedom.  

The endowed Sumners Scholarship Program was established at Texas Wesleyan University in 1994. Since that time, many Texas Wesleyan students have been honored as Sumners Scholars. The scholarship carries not only a significant stipend but also various opportunities, such as the Sumners Distinguished Lecture Series, participation in the Texas Tribune Festival and various events specifically designed to develop Scholars' leadership potential.

To learn more about or apply for the Sumners Scholarship, visit  The application deadline for the 2024-2025 academic year is Feb. 23.

For more information about the social sciences at Texas Wesleyan, visit the School of Arts and Sciences page.

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