Texas

The US Supreme Court is blocking Texas laws that are blocking social media companies

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday blocked a Texas law banning large social media companies from banning or censoring users on the basis of “views” held by two tech industry groups who have argued that the Republican-backed action would turn the scene into a “hideous abomination.” you can think for yourself. ”

The judges approved in a 5-4 decision the request of NetChoice and the computer and telecommunications industry associations, which consider Facebook, Twitter and YouTube as members, to block the law while the proceedings continue after the lower court on May 11 dropped them. take effect.

The industry groups aimed to try to block the law and protested it as a violation of corporate freedom of speech, including editorial at their level, according to the First Amendment to the US Constitution.

Conservative judges Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch issued written objections, saying it was “not at all clear how our current precedents, which were before the age of the Internet, should apply to large social media companies.” Liberal judge Elena Kagan was particularly opposed but gave no reasons.

The Texas law was passed by the Republican-led state legislature and signed by the Republican governor. Its passage comes when US conservatives and right-wing commentators complain that “Big Tech” is suppressing their views. These people cite as a notable example the permanent suspension of Twitter by former Republican President Donald Trump from the scene shortly after the January 6, 2021 attack on the US capital by a mob of his supporters, citing the “danger of further incitement to violence.”

The law, formally known as HB20, prohibits social media companies with at least 50 million active users a month from working to “censor” users from a “perspective” and allow either users or the Texas Attorney General to sue.

When Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed the bill last September, he said, “It’s a dangerous move by some social media companies to silence conservative ideas and values. This is wrong and we will not allow it in Texas.”

The industry groups said that state law would, in accordance with the constitution, allow the government to control civil matters. Restricting the forum’s editorial staff, the groups said, “would force a forum to disseminate all sorts of critical views – such as Russia’s propaganda that their invasion of Ukraine is justified.

“Instead of being an editorial board, forums will be a haven for the most heinous expressions imaginable: issues supporting the Nazis, hostile foreign propaganda, speeches supporting terrorist organizations and countless other examples,” they added.

The groups also condemned what they called “bigotry” against Texas law by excluding smaller social media sites popular with conservatives such as Parler, Gab, Gettr and Trump’s own Truth Social.

U.S. Judge Robert Pitman in the Austin state capital blocked the lawsuit last December. Pitman ruled that restrictions on how the platforms distribute materials violated the first change.

The Fifth United States Court of Appeals in New Orleans has suspended Pitman’s decision for two days after hearing oral argument. The 5th Circuit has not yet ruled on the substance of the case.

The US Supreme Court is blocking Texas laws that are blocking social media companies

Source link The US Supreme Court is blocking Texas laws that are blocking social media companies

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