Trump reacted with an executive order after Twitter started putting fact checks on his tweets. His proposed executive order is an attempt to revoke Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. Section 230 is an article in the law passed in 1996 that did not hold websites accountable for content posted by random people. Such protection is the model big companies like Youtube, Twitter, Facebook, and many other sites we love today.
Section 230 protects companies from being victims of lawsuits for comments, images, or any other posts that its users make of their own will. It allows companies to police and moderate content without liable for users’ posts. However, if the revocation of Section 230 succeeds, companies would be forced to a few options. One being no moderation and total anarchy. The other being strict moderation with little to no freedom to post content. You can find more information about Section 230 Here.
What Would This Mean For You?
What would this mean for us if Section 230 falls? As a result, websites like Facebook, Youtube, and Twitter would devolve to complete due to no moderation or would shut down to protect themselves from lawsuits. It would fundamentally change the internet as we have it today and unleash mayhem upon our internet societies. Websites like Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, even us here at OurSocietyToday could be open to lawsuits based on comments or content users like you would post. As a result, websites would have to not moderate to protect themselves. Or, as a result, they would have to shut down the ability for you, the users, to post content.
Donald Trump took this route after years of teasing action against websites for moderating posts, especially his own. The recent actions of twitter to fact check or warn users of content in his posts sparked outrage. In the end, companies moderating posts, and Section 230 is critical for protecting the integrity of the internet today. You either have it as it is, or you have lawlessness and chaos. Lawsuits will likely try to shoot down the president’s executive order. However, if it succeeds our experience on the internet would change forever.
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