Section 230, which is a liability shielding gift from the U.S. to “Big Tech” (the only companies in America that have it – corporate welfare!), is a serious threat to our National Security & Election Integrity. Our Country can never be safe & secure if we allow it to stand. Therefore, if the very dangerous & unfair Section 230 is not completely terminated as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), I will be forced to unequivocally VETO the Bill when sent to the very beautiful Resolute desk. Take back America NOW. Thank you!
WHAT IS THIS SECTION 230 ALL ABOUT?
Section 230 is a piece of Internet legislation in the United States, passed into law as part of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) of 1996 (a common name for Title V of the Telecommunications Act of 1996), formally codified as Section 230 of the Communications Act of 1934 at 47 U.S.C. § 230.[a] Section 230 generally provides immunity for website publishers from third-party content.
At its core, Section 230(c)(1) provides immunity from liability for providers and users of an “interactive computer service” who publish information provided by third-party users:
No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.
The statute in Section 230(c)(2) further provides “Good Samaritan” protection from civil liability for operators of interactive computer services in the removal or moderation of third-party material they deem obscene or offensive, even of constitutionally protected speech, as long as it is done in good faith.
Section 230 was developed in response to a pair of lawsuits against Internet service providers (ISPs) in the early 1990s that had different interpretations of whether the service providers should be treated as publishers or distributors of content created by its users. After passage of the Telecommunications Act, the CDA was challenged in courts and ruled by the Supreme Court in Reno v. American Civil Liberties Union (1997) to be partially unconstitutional, leaving the Section 230 provisions in place. Since then, several legal challenges have validated the constitutionality of Section 230.
Section 230 protections are not limitless, requiring providers to still remove material illegal on a federal level such as copyright infringement. In 2018, Section 230 was amended by the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act (FOSTA-SESTA) to require the removal of material violating federal and state sex trafficking laws. In the following years, protections from Section 230 have come under more scrutiny on issues related to hate speech and ideological biases in relation to the power technology companies can hold on political discussions, and became a major issue during the 2020 United States presidential election.
Passed at a time when Internet use was just starting to expand in both breadth of services and range of consumers in the United States, Section 230 has frequently been referred as a key law that has allowed the Internet to flourish, and has been called “the twenty-six words that created the Internet”.