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Law selectors, pages, etc.
SCOTUS to decide if the states of Florida and Texas can violate the first amendment.
By Curt_Anderson
February 26, 2024 9:09 am
Category: Law

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Washington — The Supreme Court is hearing arguments Monday in a pair of social media cases that could transform online speech.

The two cases concern disputes over Republican-backed laws in Florida and Texas that aim to restrict social media companies from moderating content, which tech groups representing platforms like Facebook and X see as a violation of their First Amendment rights.

The laws, both passed in 2021, came in response to what their backers saw as discrimination by social media platforms. The controversy followed social media companies' decisions to ban former President Donald Trump from their platforms after his handling of the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol. (Trump's accounts were eventually reinstated.)


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Comments on "SCOTUS to decide if the states of Florida and Texas can violate the first amendment.":

  1. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 10:08 am

    Curt,

    Thanks for that. I love it when you pretend to agree with Matt Gaetz and Steve Doocy of Fox News.

    Now? You pretend to be a supporter of the First Amendment. Keehee ha.

    Being the faithful viewer of Fox News and President of the Oregon chapter of the Fox and Friends fan club that you are, you know EFFINd@ngwell that the nuances of this have been discussed regularly in the right-wing media.

    This Court ain't libertarian, as you are... when it's convenient.

    In the past, I've noted that Clarence Thomas advocates for regulating social media entities in the way public utilities are regulated.

    Re: "The states in the case argue that the social media companies should be treated like any business and be restricted from removing posts or banning users from their platforms based upon their views."

    If this is accurate... and your Holy Trinity sources usually are not... IMO it's hard to see the Court signing off on those laws. But, something more reasonable may be likely.

    This is a tough one for me who prefers freedom. Still, social media outlets have abused their power in the past.

    FYI, I just caught an issue Samuel Alito raised exploring the boundary between censorship and regulation. As Shakespeare said, "That is the question."


  2. by Indy! on February 26, 2024 10:21 am

    Indy was against those laws (and Trump being banned) from the beginning. It's that slippery slope thing. I do think corporations should be able to ban people - but not for their opinions.


  3. by oldedude on February 26, 2024 11:23 am
    curt-(cited) The two cases concern disputes over Republican-backed laws in Florida and Texas that aim to restrict social media companies from moderating content, which tech groups representing platforms like Facebook and X see as a violation of their First Amendment rights.

    Lead- This is a tough one for me who prefers freedom. Still, social media outlets have abused their power in the past.

    FYI, I just caught an issue Samuel Alito raised exploring the boundary between censorship and regulation. As Shakespeare said, "That is the question."


    This is tough for any rational person. Yes I want people I agree with unfettered rights to say what they want. And to others, maybe not so much. And that's a conundrum. If I want my "side" to have "access" with "X" rules, those are the rules for everyone, so be careful what you wish for.

    We already know there are "rules" from "social media" on what can and cannot be said. We also know the forces at work (read swamp) also direct some of these "unknown" people. Are the social media sites going to be held accountable for withholding stories for protecting politicians (for example)? Or should they not withhold any story regardless how untrue it is? And who gets to decide? If it's an "agency" and auspice of the government, how true to the oligarchy is our access to information?

    I agree with Sam Alito above.


  4. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 12:12 pm
    Does anybody believe that I could freely express my opinions on Trump’s Truth-Social? I wouldn’t expect it.

    Freedom of speech means that individuals, newspapers, magazines, and websites have the freedom to say or not say what they want. Just because I write a letter to the editor of newspaper doesn’t mean they must publish it.

    I am against government regulation of speech other than a few exceptions like no yelling fire in theatre.


  5. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 12:20 pm

    Does anybody believe that I could freely express my opinions on Trump’s Truth-Social?

    pb's takin a wild guess. You don't have a Truth Social account.

    I am against government regulation of speech other than a few exceptions like no yelling fire in theatre.

    You are a genuine lover of freedom.


  6. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 12:39 pm
    Do you have a TS account? If so, as a test, pick one of my political posts and try reposting it on TS.


  7. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 12:53 pm

    I do have a TS account. What would like me to post?


  8. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 1:02 pm
    Thanks, HtS. How about this post? Can you post a link to Truth Social so we can all see what you posted there?

    Short of reposting my post, can you link my post(s) or even this forum?
    selectsmart.com


  9. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 1:06 pm

    This is what you are suggesting I post?

    "In Donald Trump’s unsuccessful 2020 reelection bid his campaign spent $778,379,130 with outside groups supporting him spent another $312,254,786.

    Trump has been hit with about a half billion dollars ($500,000,000) in legal penalties. Plus, he’s been paying the legal fees of a small army of high priced lawyers. It has been well established that Donald Trump is loathe to pay his own bills. Much of that money will come from the piggy banks of the MAGA faithful.

    Even among Republicans cash is not an inexhaustible supply. Will it matter for GOP fundraising efforts?"


  10. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 1:13 pm
    Sure, it doesn't have any overt insults or ad hominem attacks. No obscenities or racist language. Pretty mild stuff.


  11. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 1:17 pm

    Mild, indeed.


  12. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 1:20 pm

    Okay, I hit post. As far as I know, it's been truthed.

    Here's a copy:

    "In Donald Trump’s unsuccessful 2020 reelection bid his campaign spent $778,379,130 with outside groups supporting him spent another $312,254,786.

    Trump has been hit with about a half billion dollars ($500,000,000) in legal penalties. Plus, he’s been paying the legal fees of a small army of high priced lawyers. It has been well established that Donald Trump is loathe to pay his own bills. Much of that money will come from the piggy banks of the MAGA faithful.

    Even among Republicans cash is not an inexhaustible supply. Will it matter for GOP fundraising efforts?" -Curt Anderson, Creator, The Selectsmart.com


  13. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 1:21 pm
    You choose one of my more biting anti-Trump or anti-MAGA post if you prefer.


  14. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 1:22 pm

    No. I'm good.


  15. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 1:23 pm
    "Okay, I hit post. As far as I know, it's been truthed." ---HtS

    Thanks. Can you not see it immediately? Is there an approval process?


  16. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 1:25 pm

    I don't know any of that. Quoting you is all I've ever entered on Truth.

    We'll see.


  17. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 1:30 pm
    Regardless of whether or not it gets posted, I still don't think that government should be telling websites what posts they MUST publish.

    I personally think that forums should have an exchange of ideas and differing opinions. But if a website wants to be "safe place" for a people of a particular political bent or religious affiliation I don't have a problem with that.


  18. by HatetheSwamp on February 26, 2024 1:55 pm

    Regardless of whether or not it gets posted, I still don't think that government should be telling websites what posts they MUST publish.

    And, I agree with you. I have no reason to think that these laws do that.

    Ron DeSantis is a bit of Big Brother conservative but I don't think he'd go that far.


  19. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 2:03 pm
    That's exactly what the laws do, HtS.

    I should have written, "Regardless of whether or not it gets posted, I still don't think that government should be telling websites who and what posts they MUST publish."

    Florida’s law prevents the social media platforms from permanently barring candidates for political office in the state while Texas’ law prohibits the platforms from removing any content based on a user’s viewpoint.


  20. by oldedude on February 26, 2024 2:05 pm
    Curt- I understand your commitment in this.

    My thoughts. Are the owners of the "site" accountable for any crimes that are threatened on their site? I think there's a quagmire there. IF you say no, then does that extend to gun manufactures who have a far less accountability to someone who murders someone, seeing as they have no control of the use of the gun after it is sold to the individual. You may be able to argue that for websites successfully.

    If you say yes, then threats to politicians, etc aren't regulated or watched for (maybe).

    Those are the extreme ends. I appreciate your catch-22 in this, which is what I was talking about in the post above. Do I hold you (website owner) accountable for other people's actions? That sounds unreasonable. Yet if I make direct and tangible death threats, someone should look at that. The flip side of that is; is a web owner responsible to decipher that? And are you "responsible" to "know" what a tangible threat to life?

    So I look like I'm just going back and forth. Which is absolutely true. Where do we put the accountability of the individual and take it off of big brother. And, if they put restrictions on you, what does it cost you to manufacture (or purchase) a software package that is "approved" by the "state." This is what they've done to ma and pa stores and small businesses. The government needs to get out of that business.


  21. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 2:23 pm
    OD,
    Along the lines of what you wrote above are landlord/tenant laws.

    There are laws which forbid landlords from discriminating against who they rent to. Landlords need to provide notice to the tenants before entering rental. YEt, if a landlord rents to a tenant who engages in criminal activity in their rental unit, they may face liability.

    I am a landlord and I am fine with not discriminating against tenants and I respect laws regarding tenants' rights to privacy. I am not OK with being liable for their possible crimes. For all I know they could be a meth lab, counterfeiting money or operating as a betting parlor.

    I barely have a need to moderate this forum. I certainly am not "on duty" 24/7 watching out for dangerous content in this forum or on any of the the 20,000 some selectors on this site.



  22. by Curt_Anderson on February 26, 2024 2:31 pm
    Chief Justice John Roberts seems to share my view on this subject.

    Washington CNN — The Supreme Court on Monday appeared to have deep concerns of state laws enacted in Florida and Texas that would prohibit social media platforms from throttling certain political viewpoints.

    The high-stakes battle gives the nation’s highest court an enormous say in how millions of Americans get their news and information, as well as whether sites such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and TikTok should be able to make their own decisions about how to moderate spam, hate speech and election misinformation.

    “The First Amendment restricts what the government can do,” said Chief Justice John Roberts. “What the government’s doing here is saying ‘you must do this, you must carry these people – you’ve got to explain if you don’t. That’s not the First Amendment.”
    cnn.com


  23. by Indy! on February 26, 2024 5:57 pm

    We have to keep in mind that social media sites are not the government. So they're not restricting your freedom of speech - they are merely enforcing whatever arbitrary rules they have in place. Think of it this way - is a restaurant "restricting your rights" when they require shirt and shoes?

    Twitter - btw - also randomly picks and chooses which opinions they are going to restrict just like Trump's fake twitter.


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