(Bloomberg) — Twitter Inc. and Facebook Inc. will send their chief executive officers to a U.S. Senate hearing later this month devoted to a law that shields internet companies from liabilities.
A Senate panel voted to subpoena the heads of Twitter, Facebook and Alphabet Inc.’s Google for an Oct. 28 session focusing on Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, a provision that protects the companies from lawsuits over user-generated content. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg have agreed to attend voluntarily, their companies said.
The U.S. Justice Department today sent Congress draft legislation intended to limit the scope of Section 230, a legal shield that gives online platforms immunity against certain types of lawsuits.
Section 230 is a statute in the Communications Decency Act that protects companies such as Facebook Inc. from being held legally liable for user content. It allows tech firms to remove a post without the risk of being sued if they deem it to be “obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing or otherwise objectionable.” Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have called for Section 230 to be revised amid a broader debate in Washington about social media.
The change proposed by the Justice Department today consists of several points. First, the draft legislation seeks to narrow the criteria that tech companies must meet to qualify for the Section 230 legal shield. Under the proposal, an online platform could
The Department of Justice proposed legislation Wednesday that would weaken legal liability protections for social media companies, like Facebook and Twitter, and hold them accountable for how they moderate content on their platforms. The news comes as the Trump administration turns up the heat on big tech companies as the 2020 US presidential race gets into full swing.
Specifically, the new law if passed by Congress and signed by the president, would alter the criteria online platforms must meet to benefit from liability protections granted by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
“For too long Section 230 has provided a shield for online platforms to operate with impunity,” Attorney