Now even the U.S. Supreme Court may be ready to reform Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
Honorable U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas hinted at the need to reform Section 230 in his opinion attached to a denial of a writ of certiorari in the case of Malwarebytes, Inc. v. Enigma Software Group USA, LLC.
“Without the benefit of briefing on the merits, we need not decide today the correct interpretation of §230. But in an appropriate case, it behooves us to do so,” said Justice Thomas.
Thomas said that he agreed with the Court’s decision not to review the case, but wanted to “explain why, in an appropriate case, we should consider whether the text of this increasingly important statute aligns with the current state of immunity enjoyed by Internet platforms.”
He further argued that “Courts have also departed from the most natural reading of the text by giving Internet companies immunity for their own content.”
Some leftists on Twitter, however, aren’t happy with Thomas.
Ian Millhiser, the senior correspondent for Vox, tweeted: “Clarence Thomas has always been a professional right-wing troll. He’s just a very intelligent one.”
Jesse Lee, the Vice President of Communications for Center for American Progress Action, asked: “Is doing Trump’s bidding out of nowhere ‘originalism’ or ‘textualism?’”
Matthew Chapman, a reporter for Raw Story, jumped to the conclusion that Thomas was calling for the repeal of Section 230, saying in a tweet: “By far, the most stupid and shortsighted opinion that pro-Trump lawmakers and jurists have is that Section 230 immunity should be repealed for online platforms. It would do literally the opposite of what they’re imagining it would do.”
Judd Legum, who writes the Popular Information Newsletter, tweeted: “Is Thomas exactly right about Section 230? I’m not sure. But it is clear that the current system is badly broken. Tech companies claim to be addressing problems voluntarily, but things keep getting worse.”
Regardless of what Twitter may think, several legislators appear to agree that Section 230 needs to be reformed. Congressman Jim Jordan (R-OH) introduced the Protect Speech Act earlier this month. In September, Sens. Roger Wicker (R-MS), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) introduced the Online Freedom and Viewpoint Diversity Act.
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