Laws and Regulations Concerning Publishing on the Internet

by Kyle Bruder

Stickmen Free Speech Oppression

This is an overview of laws and regulations that apply to roles related to the operation of interactive computer services. There are a great many dimensions to the regulation of websites such as jurisdiction, domain, enforcement and precedent. The legitimacy of such notions can certainly be challenged with intellectual honesty and in earnest, however there is no harm in becoming aware of the expectations of law enforcers and society at large.


California Internet Consumer Protection and Net Neutrality Act of 2018

This bill prevents Internet service providers from blocking lawful content applications and services.

Bill Text - SB-822 Communications: broadband Internet access service.


EARN IT Act of 2020

Originally introduced by Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) in March of 2020, the bipartisan bill with 16 cosponsors unanimously passed the Senate to the House where it has been introduced by Representatives Sylvia Garcia (D-TX) and Ann Wagner (R-MO). Trump and Biden have indicated they would sign it into law. If The EARN IT Act becomes Law, Section 230 will be removed from US Code Title 47.

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1333965375193624578
Trump's feelings about Section 230

Opinion | Joe Biden Says Age Is Just a Number - The New York Times
Mr. Biden interviews for The New York Times’s endorsement. Biden sells the "idea" of revoking Section 230 about 3/4 into the piece.

EARN IT Act of 2020 (S. 3398) - GovTrack.us
S. 3398. A bill to establish a National Commission on Online Child Sexual Exploitation Prevention, and for other purposes. In GovTrack.us, a database of bills in the U.S. Congress.

Urgent: EARN IT Act Introduced in House of Representatives | Electronic Frontier Foundation
The dangerous EARN IT Act passed the Senate Judiciary Committee last month, and now it’s been introduced in the House of Representatives. Take Action. Tell Congress to Reject the Earn It Act. We need your help to stop this anti-speech, anti-security bill. Email your elected offi…

https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/3398


Communications Decency Act of 1996 - Section 230

This section of the Communications Decency Act shields providers of social media platforms from First Amendment legal challenges from their members/customers/users. Trump has suggested removing it from the books and such a bid is likely as he prepares to leave office.

Currently, Twitter, Facebook, Google, etc. can legally remove speech added by their users. If Section 230 is removed from law, such actions by the platform providers would be in violation of first amendment protections opening the prospect of individual cases to make their way up the federal appeals circuits.

47 U.S. Code § 230 - Protection for private blocking and screening of offensive material | U.S. Code | US Law | LII / Legal Information Institute


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Law and Order

Contributed by Kyle Bruder on Dec. 3, 2020, 9:55 p.m.
Last updated on Dec. 4, 2020, 2:57 a.m.