Google snubbed a Senate hearing on internet meddling

Senators from both major parties tore into Google Wednesday for declining to send its top executive to a hearing on foreign internet campaigns to influence U.S. voters, an omission that one Republican senator called an “outrage.”

Staff members on the Senate Intelligence Committee set up an empty chair to represent Google’s absence from the hearing and placed it next to Facebook and Twitter executives, who vowed to fight foreign agents from manipulating their social media platforms.

The criticism was so intense of Google that experts said the Mountain View, California, tech giant will almost certainly have to change its approach to forestall or shape potential regulation from Capitol Hill.