Supreme Court Strikes Down Anti-Censorship Social Media Laws | EUROtoday

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The Supreme Court struck down two legal guidelines handed by Republican statehouses meant to curb perceived censorship by social media platforms on Monday.

The court docket dominated within the twin circumstances of Moody v. NetChoice and NetChoice v. Paxton that anti-censorship legal guidelines handed in Florida and Texas violated the First Amendment rights of social media platforms by limiting their capability to train editorial judgment over what content material customers shared.

The majority ruling, written by Justice Elena Kagan, despatched each selections again to the decrease courts, and was joined by Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett, and Chief Justice John Roberts. Justices Ketanji Brown Jackson, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch concurred in separate opinions.

At concern had been two legal guidelines handed by Republicans in 2021 in response to the notion amongst conservatives that their views had been being censored by massive social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter (now X) and different websites. The legal guidelines aimed to dam digital platforms from banning, eradicating or hiding content material primarily based on the political viewpoint expressed.

NetChoice, a lobbying group for the tech trade, sued to overturn the legal guidelines by arguing that platforms have a First Amendment proper to manage the content material posted by customers. The lobbying group claimed that content material moderation selections made by platforms are not any completely different from the “editorial discretion” exercised by newspapers after they decide what tales or editorials to run and the place to position them.

Florida and Texas, nevertheless, argued that the platforms shouldn’t be seen as akin to newspapers however slightly to different telecommunications platforms like the phone or telegraph. Like different telecommunications platforms, states must be allowed to manage digital platforms as widespread carriers by forbidding them to discriminate within the content material they transmit.

Supporters of strict antitrust regulation additionally sided with Florida and Texas to argue that granting digital platforms First Amendment protections akin to newspapers might severely hamper regulatory motion geared toward reining within the twenty first century’s wealthiest and strongest companies.