HEY PEDES! I've been seeing a lot of questions and misinformation going around about the executive order (not to mention the fake news that's been trending on r/REDACTED). So I wanted to do a quick summary for all of you pedes who want a short but in-depth explanation about Section 230. Moreover, my legal thesis in law school was on Section 230 of the CDA, the very law the executive order today is affecting.
Here is a brief explanation:
-A publisher is an entity that controls the content that they present to a user—Think of CNN. Because they are in control of the content being presented (like a news article), they are legally responsible for it and any fake news that they publish (defamation for example), even if they hire someone else to write it. The less control they exert over the content they publish, the less likely they will be considered a publisher (and less likely to be held responsible for the content).
-In 1996 Congress passed the CDA which includes Section 230. Section 230 was passed for two reasons, to stop the spread of pornography on the internet and at the same time to allow other speech to live freely.
-Section 230 basically stated that any internet platform which hosts other users is not responsible for the content posted by those users (and therefore not considered a publisher). So, if a user were to post leaked naked pictures on Facebook, then Facebook could not be held jointly liable for hosting those pictures EVEN IF THEY DID NOT REMOVE THE PICTURES. The intent by congress was that if we protect these companies from liability from users then they will avoid taking action by limiting and censoring posts and as such, speech.
-However, Section 230 contains a clause which has been the subject of a lot of legal debate. 230(c)(2)(A) provides that even if a social media platform exerts control over material that is "obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise objectionable", then it still cannot be considered a publisher (remember that exerting control over content usually makes you legally responsible for that content).
-The problem is that the clause was almost unequivocally referring to violence and porn, but federal courts (who knows why) began interpreting "otherwise objectional" as anything that a platform finds offensive. As such, social media platforms were able to ban and censor speech just because they found it offensive. Thus, exerting control and still immune under the language of 230(c)(2)(A).
-In addition to the vagueness of the term "otherwise objectionable". Some promoters of free speech argued that 230(c)(2)(A) is an explicit condition/clause. In other words, a platform can ban things considered "obscene, lewd, etc..." without being defined as a publisher (exerting control) but as soon as they begin to exert control over content that does not meet these criteria explicitly listed, then they are risking moving into publisher territory and no longer immune from lawsuits based on the content posted on their website.
-Trump's executive order is attempting to clarify the law and the enforcement of the law. The executive order is basically saying, if you begin to ban or control content that is not under the list in 230(c)(2)(A) then you're going to be considered a publisher. So social media companies have a choice, they can back off and allow free public discourse to take place on the internet, all the while enjoying their (very generous) lawsuit immunity, or they can exercise their free speech rights of association and ban everything to hell, but then they no longer have the immunity.
I'll try to answer as many questions as I can in the comments. Hope this helps!
As this story states, several GOP members of Congress have set their sights on Reddit during this POTUS-lead pushback against social media. Prior to our predetermined-to-fail quarantine appeals, we conducted research comparing. The full report submitted to Reddit, the media, and members of the government can be seen in full HERE.
With national interest now focused on the underhanded antics of left-wing social media companies, we would like to provide lawmakers with additional examples of Reddit's inherit bias toward Trump supporters. The justification given for our initial quarantine was seven comments on a post which Reddit deemed advocated for violence towards police officers. As the report above demonstrates, the comments from left leaning subreddits far exceed ours in both quantity and veracity (29 to 7 in r/politics alone). The quarantine only occurred after pressure from Carlos Maza and Media Matters. For any lawmakers reading this post, those two and their interactions with social media companies should warrant your extreme scrutiny and would serve as an exceptional focus point for the beginning of any investigation. If you opt to interview individuals from Reddit, Inc. directly involved with actions against r/The_Donald and interactions with deplatforming extraordinaires, we highly suggest questioning Ms. Jessica Ashooh, Director of Policy for Reddit.
Since we are now free to operate as we please, we are commencing Operation Bareback Spez. We are asking users to assist in assembling further research to provide to the lawmakers listed in the story and members of the media. The methods used for this collection will be the same as our previous effort.
We are focusing our search on finding violent comments specifically directed towards law enforcement and government officials.
Go to http://dev.redditsearch.io/.
We are looking for current comments, so select "Week" at the top.
Enter a search term. Example terms would be "shot,” “shoot,” “pigs,” “cops,” “cop,” “pig,” “execute,” “executed,” etc. This is by no means an exhaustive list.
Select a subreddit. To narrow our focus, we will be concentrating on the following:
Leave the "Authors" and "Domains" boxes blank.
Hit "Search" (Note: for each new search, you must refresh the page).
When you find violent comments, copy the direct link and archive them using a tool such as http://archive.is.
Comment your submissions here, using the template found in the top stickied comment in this thread.
In addition to the search above, look for threads concerning the situation in Minneapolis. Those should yield the best results. If you find a post with several thousand comments, please link it below so that others may help comb through it.
Thanks to all of you for your contributions in this and your constant efforts to make .win the great place it is today.
NYT cover story about 26-year-old ER doc who heroically died of COVID19 … was all fabricated, the doctor didn’t have COVID19 and he did not die https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/05/fake-news-new-york-times-admits-report-26-yr-old-e-r-doctor-died-coronavirus-completely-made/
Florida’s “evidence-based” reopening is working https://www.city-journal.org/florida-evidence-based-reopening-working
Biden reportedly leaning toward Kamala Harris as his VP running mate, and quite probably the President (obama) if he wins and has to step down … a Dem who couldn’t get Dem voters excited in a single state primary https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/elections-2020/shes-tough-lindsey-graham-says-kamala-harris-is-likely-bidens-vice-presidential-pick/ar-BB14IJk9?ocid=st2
Potential Biden VP Amy Klobuchar had failed to prosecute the cop who killed Floyd – won’t go over well with the “you ain’t black” message https://www.breitbart.com/2020-election/2020/05/28/klobuchar-previously-declined-to-prosecute-officer-involved-in-george-floyds-death/
Texas Supreme Court limits attempts to expand absentee ballot distribution https://www.texastribune.org/2020/05/27/texas-vote-by-mail-coronavirus/
Trump signs executive order removing immunity from social media companies engaged in political activism https://twitter.com/whitehouse/status/1266106020205662212?s=21
Twitter admits its fact-check effort on Trumps tweet was incorrect (very quietly) https://bongino.com/twitter-revises-fact-check-of-trump-because-they-were-wrong
Dems get caught paying social media influencers to covertly push Dem agenda and malign GOP candidates https://www.redstate.com/nick-arama/2020/05/28/dems-paying-social-media-influencers-to-covertly-push-candidates-agenda/
Minneapolis police chief says many of the rioters were curiously not from Minneapolis https://www.fox9.com/video/688884