The coronavirus threat creates new challenges for social-media companies already grappling with the limits of free speech online. China is waging an information war to whitewash its handling of the virus and impugn the U.S. Meanwhile, charlatans hawking bogus science or false cures could endanger the public.

Yet some of the web’s gatekeepers are tempted to go further and stamp out the free debate that helped alert Americans to the threat of the virus in the first place. They want to require conformity with the judgment of…



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