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Wednesday, February 10, 2021

BIG TECH: Florida Takes Aim at Social Media Censorship


Florida Takes Aim at Social Media Censorship

Anti-censorship law would sidestep Section 230 protections

BY PETR SVAB | 10 Feb 2021

Florida Anti-Censorship Proposal Seeks to Sidestep Section 230 Protections

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is taking a stand against social media censorship with a proposal that would allow tech platforms to be fined or sued for certain content-policing decisions.

While companies such as You-Tube, Facebook, and Twitter enjoy broad liability protection under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, the proposal appears to attempt to sidestep those protections by asking for more transparency, tying anti-censorship measures to state election regulations, and giving users more control over content policing.

Section 230 shields internet platforms from liability for “any action voluntarily taken in good faith to restrict access to or availability of material that the provider or user considers to be obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise objectionable.”

Some have argued that social media companies have interpreted “otherwise objectionable” too broadly and that it wasn’t meant to encompass political speech that the companies claim to find “objectionable.”


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