Congress Not Yet Willing To Outlaw Being A Jerk Online

from the that-whole-free-speech-thing dept

In the wake of the whole Megan Meier/Lori Drew thing, politicians started shoving each other aside to introduce "anti-cyber bullying legislation" that would outlaw being a jerk. The whole thing was pretty ridiculous. People are going to be jerks. You can't outlaw it. Beyond just the First Amendment issue, the simple fact is some people will act like jerks some of the time. It happens. It doesn't mean that it's good, but that also doesn't mean that you can just outlaw it. Of course, seeing as this is the type of legislation that politicians like to claim is "to protect the children" and gets them in the press, there's always a chance that laws like this get some momentum. Thankfully, it looks like our Congressional Reps. at least recognize what a dumb idea this is. While Rep. Linda Sanchez insists that such a law is needed, it appears that other politicians are not very interested, pointing out the First Amendment issues, as well as the unintended consequences of making such a vague concept a criminal offense.

Filed Under: bullying, cyberbullying, regulations

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

  1. identicon
    Fake Steve Colbert, 1 Oct 2009 @ 2:36pm

    Will it be a late lunch or early dinner?

    Did you say something? I was so busy eating a burrito that I ordered with my iPhone.

    Mmmmm. ;mt=1

    So good. Mmmmm.

    You know, Nation, I love burritos. And burritos love the iPhone. So by the transitive quality, if you don't have an iPhone, you don't love burritos.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter

Comment Options:

  • Use markdown for basic formatting. (HTML is not supported.)
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Shop Now: Techdirt Logo Gear
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.