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Justice Department Proposes Weakening Social Media's Legal Shield

Aunt Antifa

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The law says, “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.” Emphasis is mine.

All of the content on the Debate Politics platform is created/provided by another party, i.e. someone who isn’t Debate Politics. This differs from a social media platform such as Facebook which produces its own content in addition to hosting consumer content and algorithmically manipulates the presentation of all content as its operating model. Facebook is only free because it isn’t neutral and it makes money by creating advertising content and manipulating the content it’s users see.

There’s also another key difference. Debate Politics moderators do not alter user posts. They enforce TOS rules that may require removal of a post or punishment of a user for posting it in the first place. But the content was still wholly provided by another. This is a far cry from the practice of, for example, Twitter staff in editing posts. At what point does information cease to be considered as provided by another content provider if it is being altered by Twitter?
WHat posts have twitter staff altered?
 

Napoleon

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LMAO... Do you think this has never been tested in court?
It has been litigated and the points I’ve raised have been upheld. For example, MCW, Inc. v. badbusinessbureau.com. The court rejected the website’s immunity claim under 230 because the case involved content they had created rather than another provider.
 

Phys251

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Looks like Trump is getting upset that private companies were able to set rules and limits for what they allow to be posted on their apps. I don't think this is a good move, it's clearly just reactionary nonsense and Trump's desire to bring the hammer of government against the free exercise of rights.
See? Both sides are the same! /s
 

Ikari

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Then they are liable
Nope, the people posting their shit are liable for what they say, at most. You can't control what people post, but you can try to police the crazies as best as possible. But it's not possible to get everyone posting insane nonsense immediately. So they cannot be liable for what their members post, but they can police the posts they allow to remain up.

Don't like it...make your own damned app. Free Market.
 

trouble13

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Nope, the people posting their shit are liable for what they say, at most. You can't control what people post, but you can try to police the crazies as best as possible. But it's not possible to get everyone posting insane nonsense immediately. So they cannot be liable for what their members post, but they can police the posts they allow to remain up.

Don't like it...make your own damned app. Free Market.
Thats like me starting my own newspaper with thousands of reporters and claiming im not responsible for what is being published because there is too many reporters on my staff for me to police them so i only police the ones i dont like.
 

Napoleon

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WHat posts have twitter staff altered?
At a high level, let’s look at some of Trump’s tweets. Twitter has edited some of them to add brief commentary of its own and link to information it believes is contrary to the content Trump posted. In doing so, they are modifying Trump’s content and inserting their own. So the question becomes - who is actually legally liable for the tweet once it’s been edited by Twitter to add its own content?
 

Athanasius68

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You do understand that these laws, if used the way Trump wants, effectively could shut down right wing media, correct?

Plus: do you enjoy posting to forums like this one? They will go away. No one will want the liability.

But you know all of this, because as a conservative you spend so much of your time gaming out unintended consequences vs punitive action against enemies at the moment you have power.
Why would it uniquely shut down right wing media and not left wing or mainstream? They all operate under the same laws. Which have nothing to do with what is being talked about.

Could DP "go away"? I suppose that would depend upon how DP conducts its business. I don't see how though at the present time.
 

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Thats like me starting my own newspaper with thousands of reporters and claiming im not responsible for what is being published because there is too many reporters on my staff for me to police them so i only police the ones i dont like.
Social media sites do not create content like newspapers do. They merely provide a forum through which others can spew their garbage. It's a tough job moderating the amount of garbage people spew, and that grows exponentially as the user base increases.

Debate Politics, for instance, doesn't create content. It's just a forum for us to express opinions and BS. But DP does have the right to police and censor the stuff that is posted on it. It's private.
 

Aunt Antifa

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At a high level, let’s look at some of Trump’s tweets. Twitter has edited some of them to add brief commentary of its own and link to information it believes is contrary to the content Trump posted. In doing so, they are modifying Trump’s content and inserting their own. So the question becomes - who is actually legally liable for the tweet once it’s been edited by Twitter to add its own content?
That is not editing a post. You are incorrect. Everything you said after that was pointless.

And Twitter is a private company. They are bound by their own ToS, and even then they have flexibility within the language to make the ToS applicable in whatever manner they see fit. It’s why Trump is allowed to openly foment violence and keep his account vs if you or I did that. See? They can make decisions based on context regardless of their own ToS because...AMERICA. This is the free market in action, bay bee.
 

Napoleon

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That is not editing a post. You are incorrect. Everything you said after that was pointless.

And Twitter is a private company. They are bound by their own ToS, and even then they have flexibility within the language to make the ToS applicable in whatever manner they see fit. It’s why Trump is allowed to openly foment violence and keep his account vs if you or I did that. See? They can make decisions based on context regardless of their own ToS because...AMERICA. This is the free market in action, bay bee.
You don’t seem to understand. Immunity under 230 applies only to the content not created by the platform. Twitter does not have liability for a Trump tweet all by itself because Twitter didn’t post that tweet. But if Twitter alters the content of that tweet to add its own content to it then Twitter does have liability because it becomes content created by Twitter.
 

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Looks like Trump is getting upset that private companies were able to set rules and limits for what they allow to be posted on their apps. I don't think this is a good move, it's clearly just reactionary nonsense and Trump's desire to bring the hammer of government against the free exercise of rights.
actually, I will disagree here...we need to have them be liable for some of the things they allow on their forums...for instance Boogalo bois and Kenosha guard planning a mass violence event in Kenosha
 

trouble13

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Social media sites do not create content like newspapers do. They merely provide a forum through which others can spew their garbage. It's a tough job moderating the amount of garbage people spew, and that grows exponentially as the user base increases.

Debate Politics, for instance, doesn't create content. It's just a forum for us to express opinions and BS. But DP does have the right to police and censor the stuff that is posted on it. It's private.
So if a site was for men only and they could somehow identify the users gender that would be acceptable to you?
And to build on it, the site allowed these men to promote slut shaming specific women, thats ok as well because the owner of the site does not object?
Then if the site grew in popularity and started buying up all its competitors and implimented that same policy, still no problem?
And they did it all with the governments help because the legislators wrote a law that provides them with a legal shield that protects them from compensating anyone who has ben damaged from their policies.

If your answer is yes, thats all fine, because these are private companies; I have to ask if its legal to set this type of policy in the cyber world, shouldnt it be ok for private businesses in the real world to do the same?
What if i want to have a bakery that only serves straight people. Im a private business shouldn't it be legal for me to discriminate?
 

roguenuke

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So if a site was for men only and they could somehow identify the users gender that would be acceptable to you?
And to build on it, the site allowed these men to promote slut shaming specific women, thats ok as well because the owner of the site does not object?
Then if the site grew in popularity and started buying up all its competitors and implimented that same policy, still no problem?
And they did it all with the governments help because the legislators wrote a law that provides them with a legal shield that protects them from compensating anyone who has ben damaged from their policies.

If your answer is yes, thats all fine, because these are private companies; I have to ask if its legal to set this type of policy in the cyber world, shouldnt it be ok for private businesses in the real world to do the same?
What if i want to have a bakery that only serves straight people. Im a private business shouldn't it be legal for me to discriminate?
It is legal to have men only sites in the cyber world.

As for doing it in real life, off the internet, you can have private groups with no women allowed. That too is legal.

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roguenuke

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At a high level, let’s look at some of Trump’s tweets. Twitter has edited some of them to add brief commentary of its own and link to information it believes is contrary to the content Trump posted. In doing so, they are modifying Trump’s content and inserting their own. So the question becomes - who is actually legally liable for the tweet once it’s been edited by Twitter to add its own content?
They did not edit them. They simply added a label to them. The content was not changed. Just as when a network shows a movie and adds the label beforehand "The following content may be unsuitable for certain viewers. Viewer discretion is advised.". The label is added as a warning but doesn't change the actual content.



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roguenuke

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actually, I will disagree here...we need to have them be liable for some of the things they allow on their forums...for instance Boogalo bois and Kenosha guard planning a mass violence event in Kenosha
I dont agree. Those posting such things should be liable for it.

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That is not editing a post. You are incorrect. Everything you said after that was pointless.

And Twitter is a private company. They are bound by their own ToS, and even then they have flexibility within the language to make the ToS applicable in whatever manner they see fit. It’s why Trump is allowed to openly foment violence and keep his account vs if you or I did that. See? They can make decisions based on context regardless of their own ToS because...AMERICA. This is the free market in action, bay bee.
Yes-- they can set their policies as they see fit.
But how can they claim responsibility for only SOME of the activity on their board? They can't, no more than the city of Louisville can claim responsibility for only some of the acts of its employees.
If Twitter et al wants to be in the position of evaluating the content of what appears on its site, it is responsible for ALL of it, not just some.
That is what the DOJ seems to be saying.
 

Aunt Antifa

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Yes-- they can set their policies as they see fit.
But how can they claim responsibility for only SOME of the activity on their board? They can't, no more than the city of Louisville can claim responsibility for only some of the acts of its employees.
If Twitter et al wants to be in the position of evaluating the content of what appears on its site, it is responsible for ALL of it, not just some.
That is what the DOJ seems to be saying.
It’s their site. What part of that are you still struggling with? Private company. Change the channel. Go to Parlor.
 

Athanasius68

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It’s their site. What part of that are you still struggling with? Private company. Change the channel. Go to Parlor.
And they should be liable for what they permit on their site-- if they otherwise choose to judge the content of what is placed on their site.
 

Aunt Antifa

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And they should be liable for what they permit on their site-- if they otherwise choose to judge the content of what is placed on their site.
They can do that if they want. It’s a private company. Private company doesn’t mean *you*, as a consumer of their service, define for them what they can and cannot place on their site.

And I’ve said this before: if you support this, then prepare yourself for having sites like this go away, and all your fav right wing shithole rabbit holes closing up shop. NO one will want the liability. It’s not worth the headache when some yenta decides to cause trouble because their feelings were hurt over Ben Shapiro being called a midget.

Why are you folks struggling so hard with the free market?
 

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It has been litigated and the points I’ve raised have been upheld. For example, MCW, Inc. v. badbusinessbureau.com. The court rejected the website’s immunity claim under 230 because the case involved content they had created rather than another provider.
What content has twitter created? Does the obscenity filter on DP which alters the posters original post also fall in this category?
 

BlueTex

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At a high level, let’s look at some of Trump’s tweets. Twitter has edited some of them to add brief commentary of its own and link to information it believes is contrary to the content Trump posted. In doing so, they are modifying Trump’s content and inserting their own. So the question becomes - who is actually legally liable for the tweet once it’s been edited by Twitter to add its own content?
Complete BS.... Twitter adds a warning to the content, they do not alter content at all..
 

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Nope.

They can police the postings on their sites and they may ban or censor as they see fit. It's private.
‘They are connected notions. Rights bring, and require, accountability.

So yes, they have a right to censor as they choose, but with it comes responsibility for what appears because ownership has taken an active part in its appearing on thei site. Signing off on and condoning it, as it were.

Choose not to censor and you get to say, ‘Hey, free access site. We don’t censor and we condone none of what appears on our pages”
 

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I dont agree. Those posting such things should be liable for it.

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when Facebook permits a group to promote violence and has been reported repeatedly to them...they are enabling the situation to happen. In the case of Kenoha...there were more than 400 reports in reference to the Kenosha Guard and Boogaloo Bois planning to shoot protesters and they did not take it down. There is a point when you have endorsed the content you permit on your server. This is how sex trafficking, child porn distributors, and terrorist groups are being allowed to flourish.
 

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Should such platforms pick and choose what they allow to onto their sites, then they become liable for what they choose to permit onto it.
"Liable" for what and to whom? A private company can do whatever the hell it wants, within the law. Muzzling the media is both unconstitutional and the province of authoritarian regimes; Soviet Russia, Nazi Germany; you name an authoritarian government and you'll find the government line is all you'll read or see in their media.
 
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