Section 230

Mike Masnick: In Defense of Section 230 and a Decentralized Internet

Techdirt's founder wants to give end users, not politicians and tech giants, more control over what we can say and see online.

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One of the few things that Donald Trump and Joe Biden agree on is their shared hatred of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which gives ISPs and website operators legal immunity from most user-generated content. 

Donald Trump vetoed the defense spending bill in December because the legislation didn't include language "terminating" Section 230 and Joe Biden has said that "Section 230 should be revoked, immediately." Conservative Republicans such as Sens. Ted Cruz (Texas) and Josh Hawley (Mo.) and progressive Democrats such as Sens. Bernie Sanders (Vt.) and Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) have called for its reform or repeal. 

Sometimes called "the internet's First Amendment" and "the 26 words that created the internet," Section 230 is widely accused of, on the one hand, allowing Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other social-media giants to squelch conservative voices and, on the other hand, fueling the spread of misinformation and disinformation that allowed Donald Trump to win the 2016 election. Critics also charge that Section 230 enables all sorts of social ills, from QAnon conspiracy-mongering to the global sex-trafficking of children.

Enter Mike Masnick, the 46-year-old entrepreneur and analyst behind the influential website Techdirt and the digital think tank the Copia Institute. Where others are constantly talking about how to restrict and regulate the internet and tech giants to conform to one ideological vision or another, he champions protocols and practices that he thinks would lead to a more-decentralized internet and culture, including expanding Section 230 immunity, the use of encryption, and the sorts of tools that give end users more power to control what they say and see online.

Nick Gillespie spoke with Masnick about what current debates over social media get drastically wrong, how free speech is simultaneously both empowered and imperiled by politicians here and abroad, and why a more-decentralized internet is not just possible but preferable to what we have now.

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80 responses to “Mike Masnick: In Defense of Section 230 and a Decentralized Internet

  1. OPEN QUESTIONS FOR ALL ENEMIES OF SECTION 230

    The day after tomorrow, you get a jury summons. You will be asked to rule in the following case: A poster posted the following to social media: “Government Almighty LOVES US ALL, FAR more than we can EVER know!”

    This attracted protests from liberals, who thought that they may have detected hints of sarcasm, which was hurtful, and invalidated the personhoods of a few Sensitive Souls. It ALSO attracted protests from conservatives, who were miffed that this was a PARTIAL truth only (thereby being at least partially a lie), with the REAL, full TRUTH AND ONLY THE TRUTH being, “Government Almighty of Der TrumpfenFuhrer ONLY, LOVES US ALL, FAR more than we can EVER know! Thou shalt have NO Government Almighty without Der TrumpfenFuhrer, for Our TrumpfenFuhrer is a jealous Government Almighty!”

    Ministry of Truth, and Ministry of Hurt Baby Feelings, officials were consulted. Now there are charges!

    QUESTIONS FOR YOU THE JUROR:

    “Government Almighty LOVES US ALL”, true or false?

    “Government Almighty LOVES US ALL”, hurtful sarcasm or not?

    Will you be utterly delighted to serve on this jury? Keep in mind that OJ Simpson got an 11-month criminal trial! And a 4-month civil trial!

    1. Ok? If Chewbacca lives on Endor, you must acquit!

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    2. Amazing after 3 years if arguments over this you still rely purely on strawman views at best but idiotic hyperbole for the most part.

      Get well soon sarcasmic.

      1. Refute the below, power-pig asshole! I’ll wait!

        A prime argument of enemies of Section 230 is, since the government does such a HUGE favor for owners of web sites, by PROTECTING web site owners from being sued (in the courts of Government Almighty) as a “publisher”, then this is an unfair treatment of web site owners! Who SHOULD (lacking “unfair” section 230 provisions) be able to get SUED for the writings of OTHER PEOPLE! And punished by Government Almighty, for disobeying any and all decrees from Government Almighty’s courts, after getting sued!

        In a nutshell: Government Almighty should be able to boss around your uses of your web site, because, after all, Government Almighty is “protecting” you… From Government Almighty!!!

        Wow, just THINK of what we could do with this logic! Government Almighty is “protecting” you from getting sued in matters concerning who you chose to date or marry… In matters concerning what line of work you chose… What you eat and drink… What you read… What you think… Therefore, Government Almighty should be able to boss you around on ALL of these matters, and more! The only limits are the imaginations and power-lusts of politicians!

        1. You’re arguing like several oligarchal corporatist entities who now are the American government, are some little mom & pop free-market outfits.

          1. “…several oligarchal corporatist entities…” don’t have the power to fine, jail, or shoot me, willfully ignorant statist wonder!

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    5. QUESTIONS FOR YOU THE JUROR:

      “Government Almighty LOVES US ALL”, true or false?

      “Government Almighty LOVES US ALL”, hurtful sarcasm or not?

      Will you be utterly delighted to serve on this jury? Keep in mind that OJ Simpson got an 11-month criminal trial! And a 4-month civil trial!

      You seem critically confused on criminal law, civil law, juries, section 230, and many, many other things.

      Not guilty. If hung, I’d ask the judge to declare a mistrial for inadequate legal representation.

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  3. Sometimes called “the internet’s First Amendment”

    Stupidly called “the internet’s First Amendment”. By any account of what the internet has clearly become, section 230 is either what’s made the major platforms so censorious, or at best, has nothing to do with ‘freedom of speech’ but is only a liability shield that has no effect on the climate of speech in that it’s an inert law that does nothing meaningful to protect it.

    I am categorically against blocking private platforms from having the right to block user activity. However, the level and type of censorship, the lying, the violations of their own Terms of Service agreements with their users, and the collusion with other market actors to block competitors has become sickening, and there may be a case to keep section 230, but simply consider facebook and twitter no longer ‘platforms’ but instead reclassify them as publishers.

    1. there may be a case to keep section 230, but simply consider facebook and twitter no longer ‘platforms’ but instead reclassify them as publishers.

      I honestly find it ridiculous that it’s been so dishonestly framed as an either/or prospect. Reclassifying Facebook/Twitter/YouTube as publishers, which is what they are clearly doing now, in no way guts Section 230 as a whole. A class-action suit for the TOS violations you listed would be fine as well, but let’s be real, Lionel Hutz is the only lawyer who’s going to take that lawsuit in this political climate.

      The only way the Tech Trust gets broken up at this point is if they do something that pisses off the left so badly that even hundreds of millions in political palm-greasing isn’t enough to smooth things over.

    2. Agreed this is pretty much how I’ve been thinking about it recently. I know Ken and others will have different opinions but my thoughts have been more towards this line with recent events.

  4. Serious question – could a social media platform be created with blockchain technology? It seems to me that something sufficiently distributed would be near impossible to shut down, or to globally block someone.

    1. Good question, but who writes the software for it, for what reason? If there’s no money to be made doing it, who will do it, and why? Open source writers of software, just doing it for kicks, and to help the public? Kinda like (I think) the “PGP” “Pretty Good Privacy” writer a while back? Maybe? COULD work… Maybe!

      As soon as anyone, anywhere, makes a dollar off of it, Government Almighty will get down their pants! That’s my best bet! Just like with “private wallets” that hold Bitcoin, if I have that one right!

      1. Linux started as open source, why can’t this?

        1. When AWS violates their own terms of service to deplatform Parler at a competitor’s behest, and gets away with it, what does open source have to do with anything?

          1. something sufficiently distributed

      2. Linux indeed, good point… Sad to say, this kind of software is NOT something I can do, or anyone that I know of… May we can find one, and fund it via Kickstarter or some such?

        1. I’m not expecting to find someone in the commentariat, I just wonder if it’s possible.

          1. I’m 99.99999% sure that this is possible, yes. I write a certain flavor of software totally unrelated to this. I am so paranoid ID-wise (who am I, don’t wanna get DOXXED) that I don’t even care to ID what software I can write. But yes, I see NO reason why your ID could NOT work!

      3. Sarcssmic once claimed he was a programmer. He must be a fucking shitty programmer of he doesn’t understand FOSS. Signal is fucking FOSS. The money required comes when hosting expanding servers and infrastructure which many voluntarily donate to, see Brave and Mozilla. Sarcasmic sucks at his job.

        1. We await your solution, Oh Wise Programmer! Show us the Way! WHERE do we download your free open-source magic code, Oh Great Wizard? WHY are you here, mooching off of Reason.com’s FREE services, enabled by Section 230, when you know SOOOO much better?

          1. Hihnsanity.

    2. In this context, Blockchain should be thought of as a database. So in and of itself, it isn’t a social media platform. You would still need “Front ends” to provide a display layer for the block chain. But in general, here are the pros:

      1) Once your “post” is accepted onto the chain, it is probably there forever. Any “Front end” service wanting to replicate another service could go back through the entire chain and theoretically reconstruct it. And you cannot be “canceled” without destroying the integrity of the chain.

      2) Blockchains enable encrypted communication to empower affinity groups, direct messages, and the like which are highly capable of avoiding censorship blockades. As long as you are careful with your strongly encrypted message, it can live out there on the blockchain and no one knows what it says- and in fact only people with your public key can decrypt it to know it is from you. This makes it highly resistant to government interference.

      3) Because the data is available to everyone, you can see multiple parties creating competing front ends to display different types of entries on the blockchain- microblogs, vs messages, vs whitepapers, etc.

      But here are the cons
      A) Everything you write is on there forever. That means you can’t delete your old social media accounts. It also means that over the years, as code-breaking technology grows more advanced, you have the potential of bad actors attacking your messages encrypted with less sophisticated encryption.

      B) Oh laaaawd is it slow. Imagine a facebook or twitter feed that gets a crush of 5000 new messages every few hours. Now this can be improved with things like “side chains” and the like, but those come with other tradeoffs like once again puting your eggs in one (or at least fewer) baskets.

      Overall, the question is whether you want a distributed database, or you want a distributed message pipeline with 3rd parties (or your own desktop client) acting as the database. It is a bit of a conundrum.

      1. Thanks, Overt, for the detailed explanation! It sounds like you know this thing here, as I did not. Too bad about the tough trade-offs…

      1. Is Minds a blockchain backed site, or is it just that they happen to use Bitcoin to pay people?

        1. It is open source. Thought I read once it was blockchained or had multiple linked servers so no single entity could drop it like gab was.

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  5. I used to appreciate Section 230, until I realized it was only created to hit sideways at stupid judicial decisions which made it “necessary”.

    I don’t support repealing Section 230, but if the choice is between doing the right thing by simply undoing those stupid court decisions, and using Section 230 to encourage big tech censoring, fuck. I’d just as soon 230 died.

    I also don’t support any anti-monopoly legal action, because there are no natural monopolies, only government-created ones. But if big tech gets away with destroying Parler to please their new master in Washington, and doesn’t get sued into oblivion for breaking their own terms of service and for ganging up on a competitor, then they deserve whatever Washington does to them, and I will shed no tears and not defend them.

    1. Here is my problem: Trolls ruin everything. If I start a small site, then I want to be able to moderate however I please. I want to kick out that lefty who always tries to demand that Blacksmithing is a racist term. I want to shut up that asshole who ruining science talks with his flat earther nonsense.

      If anything makes Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube special, it is that at some point they became- not a publisher- but a town square.

      If the government is really going to fuck around with this (and I would prefer they didnt [1]) then they should figure out what makes a platform into a “Public Square” and codify requirements on them. The problem that I want to point out AGAIN, is that we already see that it won’t lead to “neutral moderation”. It will lead to Facebook pulling you down if you are contradicting the CDC.

      [1] – I repeat that if you really want to solve this, you need to free up the capital markets again. These big tech companies rose to prominence prior to SOX and other major financial restrictions that make it harder for a corporation to access capital. This gives them enormous advantages over upstarts- especially when they start colluding.

      1. Dissalow arbitrary changes of the ToS. Make the rules stay static up front or per the day a user signs up.

        99% of moderation can be a user just choosing to mute people. The site shouldn’t have to do shit.

        Switzerland requires a court order to force take downs.

        1. When guests come to JesseBahnFurher’s house, “Dissalow arbitrary changes of the ToS.” If JesseBahnFurher decides that a guest in JesseBahnFurher’s house is acting like an asshole… If “acting like an asshole” is not TOTALLY precisely defined, in ALL of its possible near-infinite permutations and combinations… As defined by courts and endless lawyers… Then JesseBahnFurher will NOT be allowed to kick said assholes out of JesseBahnFurher’s house! I’ll bet that this will be TOTES cool with JesseBahnFurher! ‘Cause I can NOT imagine that JesseBahnFurher… Wait for it now….

          …would EVER by a two-faced hypocrite!

        2. “Dissalow arbitrary changes of the ToS. Make the rules stay static up front or per the day a user signs up”

          Amazon’s failure to provide 30 day notice notwithstanding, most of these cases will not involve a company violating its TOS because at the point you say “TOS cannot change”, companies will setup TOS that give them the leeway to do what they want.

          1. Yes and that is unconscionable in contracts for any other industry. Require them to utilize contracts just like every other industry.

      2. Stick to technical issues. Access to capital is as good as its ever been. Have seen the IPO market?

        1. The IPO market was changed after the downtime bubble so for small startups it is hard to be granted IPO which is why many sell to existing companies.

    2. Easy fix. Allow lawsuits for arbitrary application of rules. End use of 230 over contracts suits.

  6. No, Nick, anybody can censor anybody. “Censor” is not a government-only sport, The First amendment only applies to government, but censorship is a perfectly cromulent word for describing how left wing big tech panders to the Democrats by destroying a common competitor.

  7. I agree with all of this. But the problem is that people want to be censored. Why? Because first of all it gives a convenient excuse for cowardice: “I tried to fight for Trump online but they banned me.” When in fact, they tweeted a reply to Bernie or AOC and got their ass handed to them repeatedly.

    More importantly, censorship provides a handy excuse for insurrection: “I tried to speak out online but they banned me so now we must resort to violence.” I’ve seen many people who are intentionally offensive and obnoxious online and wear their banned, dead avatars as badges of honor.

    I’ve been suspended and banned many times, including here on Reason. (Thank you Reason in advance for not banning me today for advocating free speech!) But I dusted myself off and kept fighting.

    Today the war is fought not with guns and cowardice in the street, but online with intellect and bravery. If you’d like a demonstration, do let me know:

    1. Thats a lot of lies for one post.

      1. Show us your wins for Trump anywhere outside your safe space here:

        1. You’re rapidly making that illegal.

          1. So you got nothing. You are only proving my original point: it would be quite a relief for you if you were actually banned somewhere. “Lemme at ’em! Why I oughtta! Show I said that you liar!”

            1. I got banned on twitter two weeks ago for typing “He’s the kind of guy who’ll tell you vaccines cause autism.”
              The reason given was “We determined this Tweet violated the Twitter Rules, specifically for:
              Violating the policy on spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19”

              Anyway, you had nothing to begin with, and, from the snottily pompous tone of your rejoinder, I happily realize I just found another White Knight sockpuppet.
              Tell me again about the chemical formulae for water, WK.

              1. I was unjustly suspended and banned on Twitter yet I got back online and fought.

                Again, show a successful battle. My original point stands.

                “Trump won because his supporters got banned and couldn’t fight for him. Prove I said that you liar.”

                Yeah no.

                None of the fools who invaded the capitol ever fought on social media, or they did and got their asses handed to them. And if they got banned on Twitter, they have more people on their block list than followers. All this will come out in the investigation. They are cowards and hypocrites and if you’re the singular exception then congrats.

                Who’s WK? Check out Fregoli delusion.

                1. Again. Youre either a retard or just ignorant. Youre projecting these people lost arguments you’ve imagined in your head. It is sad. Youre delusional.

  8. Haha nope that part of the law will be gone soon.

  9. Also every time I see the Mike Masnick Simpsons self portrait it doesn’t do justice to his comb-forward to hide his bald spots.

  10. Remember children, Section 230 is what let’s us talk about woodchippers in the Reason comment section.

    1. It is. Everybody keeps saying we should leave it be. Ok, sure.

      Everybody says we shouldn’t break up big tech or regulate them like utilities. Ok, fine.

      Those would have been my firm opinions a week ago.

      The problem is that out of all these expert everybodies not a single person has come up with a way to keep big tech from shutting down political opinions they don’t like, which they have been arrogantly doing over the last few months.

      Absent a way to fix that, I’m coming around to a “fuck ‘em” attitude toward big tech. Don’t preach to me about liberty when the people you’re defending give zero shits about liberty.

      1. Absent a way to fix that, I’m coming around to a “fuck ‘em” attitude toward big tech.

        Even at that, “fuck ’em” is irrelevant. It did and does stand in direct opposition to the 1A despite SCOTUS’s best efforts to say “If we remove all this other context, it won’t be abused as a bad law.”

        Even Ken’s “consent decree” complaint/counterargument ignores or glosses over the fact that, in S230’s absence, the DOJ would still have to go around filing new consent decrees against every new iteration of Myspace, FB, Twitter, Parler, Mastodon, Amazon, etc., etc. and still be subject to any given judge’s decision that the accused didn’t break any laws.

        It’s a law, passed by Congress that regulates free speech. Full stop. Whether you like social media or not, if you believe in the 1A, it should be repealed.

    2. Many-many of the children here are spoiled brats! Spoiled brats stomp on, and smash, their toys, knowing full well that MomDad and-or Granny-Gramps will buy them new toys anyway!

      Spoiled brats here like to go and try to tear down democracy and replace it with mob-ocracy. At the logical extreme, they may even want to conspire to “do” killings, mass killings, blowing up nukes at the extreme, in domestic terrorism! And when we the people, and our government, spy on their conspiracies to commit violence? They whine and cry like babies, expecting “privacy” as they conspire to burn it all down! As if democracy was a suicide pact!

      Whine and cry away, spoiled brats and cry-babies! Has it ever occurred to you, that with freedom comes responsibility? You want to KEEP your freedoms? Then exercise freedom responsibly!

      Has it ever occurred to you cry-babies, that before your tear down Section 230, you’d damned well have something better to replace it? Dems are in the upswing right now, stupid-heads! You do NOT get it all YOUR way, when you tear down Section 230!!! Replacements to Section 230 WILL have “don’t hurt my baby feelings” provisions, power pigs!

      1. If trumpanzees can not or will not see HOW their anti-democracy temper tantrums brought about the current wave of pro-speech-control, then READ the below! THIS is how ye brought this upon yerselves!

        Read https://reason.com/2020/12/20/desperate-to-stop-biden-from-taking-office-trump-suggests-military-intervention-voting-machine-seizures-and-appointing-sidney-powell-to-investigate-her-own-fraud-claims/ Desperate To Stop Biden From Taking Office, Trump Suggests Military Intervention, Voting Machine Seizures, and Appointing Sidney Powell To Investigate Her Own Fraud Claims

        Trump flunkies want to use martial law to hold new elections in swing states that didn’t vote Trump. Use the military to force a do-over where the people didn’t vote for Trump like they were supposed to. Give them a second bite at the apple.

        And there will be endless do-overs till these wayward slobs do things the RIGHT way, and vote for Der TrumpfenFuhrer!

        Those states who voted for Der TrumpfenFuhrer? Texas, for instance? And now that time has gone by, and millions of Texans have seen yet MORE of the “true stripes” of the Trumptatorshit… And they voted for Trump, but are SOOOO disgusted by now, they want to vote differently by now… Do THEY get a do-over?

        Let’s selectively re-play this game till the Trumptatorshit lasts forever!

        The ONLY way that states that DID vote for the continuation of the Trumptatorshit, will get a re-vote, to make it all “fair” to people who’ve changed their minds, by now, or who were excluded from voting by “R” machinations or being too busy or sick that day, to vote… The ONLY way that voters in THESE states will get a “second bite at the apple”, is to make up utterly fantastical LIES about the “R” party’s cheating, collusion with Lizard Men, etc.!

        If the Lizard Men stole it last time, what will keep them from stealing it the next time around?

        What we are CLEARLY evolving towards here, is NOT election wins by the most votes or even electoral college votes, it is “WINNING” by “He who whines and cries and makes up lies, the most”!

        WHY, oh WHY might it be, that people who don’t like the history of 1-party states, are afraid to vote “R” any more?

        1. Fucking spambot.
          All the same shit, nothing ever new.

          1. Maybe you trumpanzees could try NOT telling the EXACT SAME lies, over and over and over again!

          2. I have tried reading SQRLSY’s stuff so many times and I can’t. I mean, I *think* we are actually in agreement on this issue, but I just can’t get through all the analogies of flutes and whatnot.

            1. SQRLSY One short version: Government Almighty SUCKS at just about everything, except taking our money and making war (killing people and breaking things). Keep Government Almighty SMALL (let’s all get small!)

              Section 230 keeps Government Almighty small. Let’s keep it that way!

    3. This is the same thing retards said when net neutrality wasn’t passed.

      1. I discussed far worse things than tossing people into woodchippers on public platforms prior to section 230.

    4. No, that would be the 1st Amendment. It was the government that went after commenters

      Section 230 does nothing to prevent Amazon or whoever else hosts Reason’s servers from deciding they wanted to stop hosting Reason online due to violent speech or whatever excuse they want to give.

  11. Section 230 is over.

    It’s a ex-parrot.

    It will be reintroduced as part of the consent decree resulting from the antitrust cases pending against Facebook and Google, and that’s the end of it.

    The only relevance talking about Section 230 has now is that two years from now, we might be able to resurrect it independent of the consent decrees that will already be in effect by then.

    But no one in the Democratic party, who has any influence on policy, wants to keep Section 230 around–and that’s all that matters for the next two years.

    This is the bed we made when we defeated President Trump and gave the progressives control of the senate. Have a nice rest because our opinions won’t matter until the next election cycle starts again.

    1. This is the bed we made when we defeated President Trump and gave the progressives control of the senate. Have a nice rest because our opinions won’t matter until the next election cycle starts again.

      SCOTUS made this bed when they nullified the rest of the CDA but left S230 intact.

      You say it’s ex-parrot but would you lay down money that it will be repealed before the next election cycle? Pick your conditions and throw out some odds:
      Full repeal, no replace: 1000:1
      Full repeal, partial replace: 2:1
      No repeal, no modification: 1:1
      No repeal, modification: 1:20
      Parlet bets:
      Modification/partial replace for the better: 10000:1
      Modification/partial replace for the worse: 1:10000

      IMO, it’s more Steve Austin (the 6 Million dollar one, not the Stone Cold one) than ex-parrot.

  12. Tulsi Gabbard Pulls Back the Curtain on Why Congress Won’t Act Against Big Tech

    “What this comes down to is, section 230 gives them this legal immunity because the idea is that they are just this neutral platform, kind of like a town square,” said Gabbard.

    “This is distinct and different from somebody like the New York Times, for example, or any major media platform that does not have legal immunity because they are publishers, and they do pick and choose what news stories they publish, what letters do the editor’s ar printed, what kind of op-eds are put on their platform, and they make those decisions knowing they are legally liable.”

    Gabbard noted that these platforms are now acting as publishers as they are now making editorial decisions while maintaining a legal immunity under section 230.

    Gabbard then discussed her recent legislation that would reform section 230, which would remove the broad protections provided by the law and make things a bit more precise in what Silicon Valley giants can get away with.

    It seems like a pretty obvious move so why hasn’t it been done yet? Gabbard lets us in on a little Capitol Hill secret.

    “The real question we should all be asking is ‘why hasn’t it been fixed yet?’” said Gabbard.

    Gabbard notes that despite all the committee hearings and big talk, nothing has been done. So why?

    “It goes to money,” said Gabbard.

    “I’ve seen it happen,” she continued. “Google will have a bit reception and members of congress will go and pick up their checks. Facebook will have a big reception and they’ll go and ‘hey, where’s my check?’”

    It’s an Occam’s razor situation where the simplest answer is usually the right one. As Gabbard reveals, the reason no one is acting on big tech is that the companies are inviting our elected members of congress into their very deep pockets.

    This is a massive abuse of power on several levels and if our elected officials can’t resist the temptation of extra money in their pockets, then they need to be removed.”

    https://redstate.com/brandon_morse/2021/01/12/tulsi-gabbard-reveals-why-congress-wont-act-against-big-tech-n308619#

  13. Section 230 is obsolete. They are protected from what is posted yet they have blocked NY Post, individuals and now Parler at will. They are publishers beyond a shadow of a doubt.

    1. Well, they’re property owners with people taking a shit in their hallway.

  14. Nếu bạn đang muốn tham gia một nhà cái uy tín. Hãy thử đăng ký Gi8 uy tín bảo mật và an toàn

  15. Sometimes called “the internet’s First Amendment” and “the 26 words that created the internet,”

    Nothing says “libertarian” like regurgitating the pablum that Congress created free speech on the internet 205 yrs. after the 1A was passed and 13 yrs. after the protocols defining the internet were implemented.

  16. One thing not mentioned is distributed data and documents via peer to peer. This is like what the bit torrents use to disseminate data. Not as clunky as blockchain.

  17. Section 230 grants ISPs and website operators legal immunity from most user-generated content because they supposedly do not have control over what is published. When ISPs can block certain content, they now become publishers and that immunity should be suspended.

  18. “spread of misinformation and disinformation that allowed Donald Trump to win the 2016 election”? Really Reason dot com? Really? Thank you thank you for enlightening the masses of which I am a idiot of the village and have out-sourced my thought processes. How blind I must be but not as blind as Reason. Mr Nick you must leave us now before your black leather sport coat becomes sullied or your intellectual dialogue makes us too weary to give a damn. AND everybody knows it!
    Do you know what I think? No you don’t so stop with the assumption that you do. I know shit BEFORE I have stepped in it. What is the difference between organized crime and US governments? One is organized. Mobsters rarely allowed democratic processes before your execution which could occur at anytime and from behind not unlike a traffic stop.
    If you stand back you get a better view of the truth but wading in you become involved and find yourself being influenced by those who have a lot to lose, the public servants. They do not call themselves that anymore since you gave them the crowns to wear.

    Never vote for an incumbent, ever. PS The Kennedy’s were never “royalty” and democrats in charge does not bode well. For chrissakes, Bill won’t even fuck Hillary yet you kiss her butt. Now censor that, I dare you. And when AOC says something stupid tell her not us!