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DOJ to Propose Rolling Back Big Tech’s Legal Immunity

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posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 11:20 AM
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REPORT: DOJ to Propose Rolling Back Big Tech’s Legal Immunity


The Department of Justice is preparing proposals to roll back the legal immunities enjoyed by Big Tech companies under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA), in measures that will be announced as early as Wednesday, sources told the Wall Street Journal.



The Justice Department is set to propose a rollback of legal protections that online platforms have enjoyed for more than two decades, in an effort to make tech companies more responsible in how they police their content, according to a Trump administration official.



Section 230 gives Big Tech companies immunity from lawsuits arising from user-generated content. If a person is defamed on Google, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or other big tech platforms like Reddit, those platforms are not legally liable for the content like a traditional publisher might be. This allows social media platforms to host billions of posts from users without a potentially crippling legal risk.



Another problematic element of Section 230 is subsection c-2, which grants tech companies immunity from lawsuits arising from their censorship of “objectionable” content. This immunity gives them broad leeway to censor users, leaving no legal recourse for those who are censored — even if their social media accounts are critical to their livelihood or career.



The department’s proposal, for instance, would remove legal protections when platforms facilitate or solicit third-party content or activity that violates federal criminal law, such as online scams and trafficking in illicit drugs. The department also wouldn’t confer immunity to platforms in instances involving online child exploitation and sexual abuse, terrorism or cyberstalking. Those carve-outs are needed to curtail immunity for internet companies to allow victims to seek redress, the official said. The Justice Department also will seek to make clear that tech platforms don’t have immunity in civil-enforcement actions brought by the federal government, and can’t use immunity as a defense against antitrust claims that they removed content for anticompetitive reasons.



According to the report, it also appears that the Justice Department won’t try to strip tech companies of their immunity for censoring “objectionable” content, instead aim to spur Big Tech to be “fairer and more consistent in their decisions to take down content they find objectionable.”


Source

What do you think about this, ATS?

If section 230 is radically modified, won't Big Tech still benefit the most? Large companies could handle lawsuits whereas if websites like 4chan, 8kun, Gab, Parler and Bitchute become and are treated traditional publishers, they will have a lot to lose for hosting 'hateful' content.

While child abuse, terrorism, calls to violence and rampant censorship should have no place on these platforms, I'm afraid that future legislation may affect some unintended targets.




posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 11:24 AM
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I have ZERO confidence this will go anywhere considering how many republicans and democrats are in the bag for technofascism.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 11:28 AM
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Last time I checked, DOJ is Executive Branch.

CDA 230 is Federal law. They don't get to "roll it back."



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 11:31 AM
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What would this mean for ATS?

Wider bad word filtering? New T&C? I get censoring is not a big deal here?



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 11:33 AM
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a reply to: Anon283799




Section 230 gives Big Tech companies immunity from lawsuits arising from user-generated content.

I'm against it on the basis of free speech , there's already to much censorship on digital platforms the change to holding companies legally accountable will be a nail in the coffin for free speech online ... who polices the police.

Political interference is never to be trusted ... ever.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 11:37 AM
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originally posted by: projectvxn
I have ZERO confidence this will go anywhere considering how many republicans and democrats are in the bag for technofascism.


This.

" . . .To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day
To the last syllable of recorded time,
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing
."

Macbeth, Act V, Scene V



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 12:01 PM
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This effort by the DoJ is a pile of horse manure. All show and no go.

1) It leaves out the biggest issue... censoring based on the whims of the political ideology of the big tech company.
2) the DoJ can't make up changes to law. It's just a sh*tty proposal that they know is not going anywhere. All for show.

As usual, the Trump admin is do NOTHING to address the actual issue at hand.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 12:04 PM
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Does this relate to the social media thing from trump a week or two ago?

If I remember correctly it was intended to make a distinction between a hosting platform and a news outlet.
Like when Twitter or Facebook decides what to delete and what remains on their media then they are no longer just a host of user content.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 12:19 PM
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originally posted by: projectvxn
I have ZERO confidence this will go anywhere considering how many republicans and democrats are in the bag for technofascism.


As well as the education and healthcare system.....



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 12:23 PM
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a reply to: projectvxn

As of now, the most prevalent vectors of attack are weaponized media, tech companies, and weaponized dependency.

We might be more apt to look at a release like this as a signal of sorts, rather than something to hang our hats on.

We can turn those attack vectors into bottlenecks though, through a myriad of tactics. From personal behavior to gaining self-sufficiency in our homes.

A meaningful percentage of the American population has been weaponized as well. Not necessarily through any willingness or conscious decision, but through manipulative means in the gray zone of the human domain.

That makes this extraordinarily tricky. The foundation to fight back begins at the individual level, and we will continue to see "individualism" demonized because of it.

It may be perceived as "pacifist" in nature, but the most effective way to combat these maneuvers is patience and not falling into the division traps. All the while, actively building towards food/power/production self-sufficiency in our homes.

We can also start to look at competing platforms in the online market, but I believe that would be better placed in phase 2 and is less of a priority.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 12:34 PM
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So, we're finally going to get some action on Big Tech and most of you complain and bitch? I get it, establishment, yada yada.

For those concerned about censoring based off political beliefs, that falls under the broad language of Subsection c-2,


Another problematic element of Section 230 is subsection c-2, which grants tech companies immunity from lawsuits arising from their censorship of “objectionable” content. This immunity gives them broad leeway to censor users, leaving no legal recourse for those who are censored — even if their social media accounts are critical to their livelihood or career.

The proposals will "adjust" this.

These are proposals that will benefit us and will serve as a template which Trump can then brute force into reality Via Executive Order, so yes, he certainly can push this as within his Constitutional power to issues Executive Directives, which equal Federal Law.

Go figure 🤭
edit on 17-6-2020 by Arnie123 because: (no reason given)

edit on 17-6-2020 by Arnie123 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 12:36 PM
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a reply to: Anon283799

Once again, Bill Barr is serving the President's personal agenda to promote Trump's animus against social media platforms that have dared to fact check him and censored him for violence. Since he can't censor free speech, he's going to try and require social media tech companies to do it for him.


edit on 17-6-2020 by Sookiechacha because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 12:40 PM
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a reply to: Arnie123

This has to pass through Congress. That's why it's a "proposal", not a edict.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 12:50 PM
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Alphabet needs to get the same treatment as Ma Bell is what needs to happen.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 01:03 PM
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originally posted by: gortex
a reply to: Anon283799




Section 230 gives Big Tech companies immunity from lawsuits arising from user-generated content.

I'm against it on the basis of free speech , there's already to much censorship on digital platforms the change to holding companies legally accountable will be a nail in the coffin for free speech online ... who polices the police.

Political interference is never to be trusted ... ever.

In this we agree .
Simply for the reason the companies ARE NOT responsible for the user's content.
I look at it like this :
I give someone a pencil and a piece of paper.
Am I liable for what they write ?

It's called self-accountability , something sadly missing in today's world .
Folks want to make someone else accountable for what THEY do.

edit on 6/17/20 by Gothmog because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 01:04 PM
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I say break them up, Apple, Google, Facebook. Include Microsoft. There is no reason to not do so.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 01:07 PM
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originally posted by: ThatDamnDuckAgain
What would this mean for ATS?

Wider bad word filtering? New T&C? I get censoring is not a big deal here?


Well both Biden and Trump were/are for a 230 change. If it gets pulled abruptly (which I doubt) it would mean companies including ATS can be held accountable for what third parties post on them.

For the sake of the discussion let's assume 230 gets pulled without a proper replacement. It would change a lot and no outlet can exist in the form it is today. It would include censoring but mostly I would expect a full KYC to be able to have accounts to post online. After all the company that can be held accountable would want to know their customers to held them accountable. They would claim you still have free speech. Although many will feel limited in their speech when the whole world can file a complaint against anything you say. And I'm not even starting with the security risks of having to identify yourself on each and every platform you use.

But all good. I'm sure both parties like their technology and do not intend to take control over it.

Btw the whole covid/protest issue could be a cataclyst to enforce just that, true identification for online posting and being held accountable for what is posted. In my Dumbass opinion.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 01:09 PM
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originally posted by: Sookiechacha
a reply to: Arnie123

This has to pass through Congress. That's why it's a "proposal", not a edict.
The EO was already issued, this is the result and with Dems and Repubs both in rare agreement, it may just pass.


On one hand, Democrats and Republicans alike have found rare accord in attacking Section 230, fearing the decades-old legal shield has outlived its usefulness. 



Earlier this year, some Democrats even joined Republicans in proposing a bill that would strip Section 230 protections from companies that fail to crack down on child sexual exploitation online.

Source: Liberal Rag WAPO.

So, either way, it'll get done.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 01:15 PM
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originally posted by: Fools
I say break them up, Apple, Google, Facebook. Include Microsoft. There is no reason to not do so.

What is your reasoning behind a "break up" ?
You say there is no reason not to do so , yet no reason whatsoever for doing so.
None of the above consist as monopolies in the pure definition of the term as they have competition.



posted on Jun, 17 2020 @ 01:22 PM
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a reply to: Dumbass
Thank you for the explanation, I was thinking it would go into that direction.



Btw the whole covid/protest issue could be a cataclyst to enforce just that, true identification for online posting and being held accountable for what is posted. In my Dumbass opinion.

This is what I thought while reading your 2nd paragraph. Just another try to link the username and real name closer together.

Even worse, I say soon voices begin to appear to ask for universal identification. It is draconian how they sell it:

"Your right to identify (nice spin) is violated. You are reliable on the government to issue ID about yourself. Here, take this wireless chip and let us inject it into your palm, so you can finally be freed from tyranny."

What they leave out is that you still will not be able to produce ID, because who will be responsible for issuing it? Right, the government, or even worse, a government paid private company.



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