Senator Hawley's Section 230 Reform Even Dumber Than We Expected; Would Launch A Ton Of Vexatious Lawsuits

from the dude,-seriously? dept

So there were rumors about Senator Hawley's bill to reform Section 230 earlier this week, saying that it would remove 230 protections if you used targeted ads. Today, Hawley released the actual plan, which is very different, but even dumber. It would certainly turn the GOP from the party that wanted to push for tort reform and limit frivolous and vexatious lawsuits into the party that encouraged an avalanche of wasteful litigation.

The shortest version of the bill's likely impact is that it would create an army of "content moderation troll" lawyers, because you could sue any platform that you felt removed your content unfairly and get $5,000 plus attorney's fees. With a bit more detail, the bill requires that a platform have clear terms of service and any moderation would have to be tied back to those terms -- which pretty much shows that whoever wrote this pile of shit has no idea how content moderation works, and the fact that you need to keep adjusting the actual content moderation practices, because dishonest people who are trying to abuse your system are always trying to game things to stay "technically" within the "terms" while still wreaking havoc on your platform.

The bill then says that if a platform makes any design or operation decision that is not in "good faith", anyone can sue them for $5k and attorneys' fees. Note that this seems to go beyond just moderation decisions. It includes a platform making design decisions that you dislike. That's... crazy. There's also the question of what is actually meant by "good faith" and all the 1st Amendment issues that raises, because determining what is and is not "good faith" is a straight up editorial decision, and the whole point of the 1st Amendment is that the courts can't jump in to second guess editorial decisions.

To be clear, this law's attempt to expand "good faith" seems to be purposely made in bad faith to simply overwhelm internet platforms with tons of lawsuits.

This bill flips the entire purpose of Section 230. As Jess Miers said, this bill seems to take the immunity from civil suits in the law and turns it into a private right of action for tons of frivolous and vexatious lawsuits.

It is not a serious attempt at reform. It's an unconstitutional pile of crap that seems to serve no other purpose than to allow whiny aggrieved grifters to shake down every platform for their moderation and design choices.

Filed Under: frivolous lawsuits, good faith, intermediary liability, josh hawley, moderation, section 230, trial lawyers


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 9:40am

    You mean like if you "moderate" me here while allowing me to be harassed?

    Might want to let me speak. You'd be surprised who's watching.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 9:42am

    I will be filing against all the right wing and religious right outfits which deleted my comments, since they by far have always moderated with the most heavy hands.

    Good luck, Senator Dumbass!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. icon
    arp2 (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 9:50am

    Re:

    I know this is half-joking (I think), but the idea is that the right are more brazen and have more resources do just that- just sue the sh*t out of any platform's politics or policies they don't like. Add a bunch of Republican (not conservative) judges and they're happy to engage in this war, because in the long run, they'll come out as victors.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 9:58am

    It is not a serious attempt at reform.

    It is, if the intent is to turn all platforms into propaganda agents for the alt right.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 10:14am

    Re: Re:

    Pretty much joking, and yes, you are correct that the right generally have more resources and the will to sue. They are also more easily offended by imaginary things, and by an order of magnitude more than that, willing to pretend the have been offended or slighted.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 10:16am

    Contracting

    because dishonest people who are trying to abuse your system are always trying to game things to stay "technically" within the "terms" while still wreaking havoc on your platform.

    I was shown an old real estate purchase contract from a few decades past. Yes, it was that oversized legal paper, but everything fit on one page. Over the years, that one page grew to one page front&back, to two pages front &back, to five pages, then six with really tiny print. The contract size grew because there was a problem, and so they fixed it such that the expected outcome of the sale was spelled out in the contract, and noone could complain. It's been about the same size for the past few years now.

    This is standard in our society. From rental agreements, to credit cards, to cell phones... Eventually, they work out the rules. What we DON'T want is for the rules to change in the middle of the game to bias one side or the other. You're probably okay with accepting all the other agreements that are a part of daily life.

    If there is a complaint that the rules might be clearly spelled out is powerful evidence that bias is currently occurring on social media.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    TFG, 17 Jun 2020 @ 10:27am

    Re: Contracting

    Please provide data showing a statistically significant discrepancy in moderation efforts against conservatives specifically for holding conservative viewpoints.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. icon
    Khym Chanur (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 10:39am

    I see two big differences:

    1) For things like rental agreements, credit cards, etc, people stand to lose money or a place to stay. With online services and CDA 230, people stand to lose comments they made (usually for free) on someone else's platform.

    2) If someone contemplates rules-lawyering a rental agreement (or whatever) the consequences of them being on the losing (montary, losing their housing, etc) end serve as a strong deterrent. If a troll decides to do some rules-lawyering regarding the ToS of a social platform, the consequence is merely getting banned, which they can often get around by creating a new account. Currently the lack of consequences for the trolls is balanced by the platforms being able to easily ban the trolls.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. icon
    Khym Chanur (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 10:40am

    Damn it...

    That was meant as a reply to Koby's comment.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 10:53am

    What we DON'T want is for the rules to change in the middle of the game to bias one side or the other.

    …says the guy who believes the law should be changed to force social media services (including any such service that he owns!) into hosting speech that their owners absolutely don't want to host. I mean, you all but said the law should change to favor White supremacist propaganda; wouldn’t that be changing the rules to benefit one “side” over another?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 10:59am

    Re: Re: Contracting

    Please provide data

    To date, no major social media company has made their moderation data available. It's as if they have something to hide

    Instead, the documented events of bias against conservatives has accumulated to the point where it has become undeniable to the general public. No doubt, if left wing activists were treated unfairly, those stories would have made front page news by now.

    Today's example of bias on social media is yesterday's demonetization of The Federalist and Zerohedge websites. A left wing UK based group called CCDH was behind the demonetization effort, and was not a complaint from advertisers, or a problem that Google discovered internally. Talk about bad faith! How soon until Google work closely with outside right wing groups to comb websites for undesirable comments? Don't hold your breath.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:09am

    Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    Today's example of bias on social media is yesterday's demonetization of The Federalist and Zerohedge websites.

    That was debunked yesterday on this very site, so I have to assume you are deliberately lying.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:14am

    It's as if they have something to hide

    Please give us your Social Security number. If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear.

    the documented events of bias against conservatives has accumulated to the point where it has become undeniable to the general public

    The plural of “anecdote” is not “data”. You can bring up anecdotes of conservatives saying they were booted from Twitter for being conservative all you want. But that doesn’t prove they were booted only because they self-identified as “conservative”, or that they were booted without violating the TOS, or that they were disproportionately punished more than self-identified “liberals” for breaking the same rules in equal measure. If a conservative is more likely than a liberal to use a racial slur and thus get the boot from Twitter, the issue isn’t with Twitter.

    Today's example of bias on social media is yesterday's demonetization of The Federalist and Zerohedge websites.

    Did you read the article, or did you only read the headline and decide that Techdirt was wrong because you want to believe in the “anti-conservative bias” conspiracy theory?

    Your superstition holds no weight here. You don’t want to be proven wrong (which you have been), and you’ve done nothing to be proven right (which you aren’t). If you want us to take you seriously on the matter, stop bringing it up like it’s an objective fact until you can prove it’s an objective fact.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14. icon
    Khym Chanur (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:15am

    Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    Just yesterday there was a Techdirt article about Google and The Federalist:

    1) The exact same thing happened to Techdirt last year, and thus looks more like a stupid Google policy rather than bias on Google's part.

    2) It had to do with the comments to an article, not the content of the article itself.

    3) It would be just that one page that was demonetized, not the entire site.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:32am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    Yesterdays article briefly mentioned a "UK-based operation", but no. The operation was not named, who they are was not explained, and their shady dealings with both NBC and Google conveniently omitted. Of course, if this was a Russian group, it would be considered foreign interference against democracy and collusion.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:39am

    How likely is this bill to pass?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:48am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    The article also explained that the sites were not defunded, but you choose to ignore that because it does not fit your narrative.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:49am

    Re:

    Please give us your Social Security number. If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear.

    Nobody has identified a problem with my social security number. But another poster (TFG) is DEMANDING to see the moderation data. You better go talk to them first.

    But that doesn’t prove they were booted only because they self-identified as “conservative”, or that they were booted without violating the TOS

    Then social media companies should be happy with Hawley's proposed legislation. Of course, I suspect that they will not, because either they will need to stop the anti-conservative bias, or else they will have an estoppel problem in court.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:50am

    Anyone who has ever actually worked at moderating a forum knows how difficult it is. With the best will in the world, with a well-defined topical focus, a set of community standards based on keeping discussions of that one topic amicable, with a small group of moderators who are constantly discussing issues, ...

    It is a constant effort, frequently involving disagreements among moderators as to exactly what should be moderated, and how.

    Again, anyone who has actually done this, knows this.

    And anyone who hasn't actually done this, really needs to do one of two things: (1) set up their own forum, and run it as best they can, or (2) use other people's forums, try to talk nice, and learn what isn't considered nice when they get moderated. Hint: whining about getting moderated for being rude is ALWAYS rude. In Every Universe.

    Discussing moderation approaches in public, with the people who are maliciously intent on subverting the forum's intended use, and making it into a vehicle for their own agenda, ... is not going to happen. Ever. Anywhere. Any time. In Any Universe. It would be like Gmail publishing its techniques for spotting e-mail spam.

    In related news, scientists report that gravity is prejudiced against fat people.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20. identicon
    TFG, 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:55am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    I suggest you read the article again, and work at comprehending the role of this UK-based operation, which is ... nothing of authority.

    To whit: said operation (www.stopfundingfakenews.com, it was linked to in the article itself) wrote up a list of orgs they think shouldn't be funded.

    NBC news asked Google for comment about it.

    Google reviewed and found that there were comments their advertising clients woudln't like to be associated with, and informed the two orgs accordingly.

    The orgs weren't demonetized. Those specific pages had advertisements from Google removed if they didn't take away the comments.

    Stop misrepresenting stories to fit your narrative.

    If you wish to support the claim of anti-conservative bias, provide the data that supports it. All you have so far are people getting tossed for being assholes.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21. identicon
    TFG, 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:57am

    Re: Re:

    I demand to see the data on which you base your assertion that there is anti-conservative bias. All you have so far are assertions and dreams, which makes the claim a lie.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:59am

    Re: Re:

    Then social media companies should be happy with Hawley's proposed legislation.

    They will not be happy as the either suffer a death of a thousand cuts as every moderation decision is challenged in court, or they stop all moderation, and let the racists, bigots and trolls drive most of their users away.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:05pm

    Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    Instead, the documented events of bias against conservatives has accumulated to the point where it has become undeniable to the general public.

    No amount of lies add up to a truth, all it does do is show everyone watching that the liar in question is not interested in an honest discussion.

    Today's example of bias on social media is yesterday's demonetization of The Federalist and Zerohedge websites.

    ... This being a perfect example of that. That's not even remotely what happened, as was explained in the article itself and in the comments but since that doesn't fit your persecution complex it was twisted until it did.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:06pm

    Re:

    …says the guy who believes the law should be changed to force social media services (including any such service that he owns!) into hosting speech that their owners absolutely don't want to host.

    I believe the law should be changed to get social media companies that create an open platform for free discussion for all to live up to their promise. If they don't want to host certain content, that's fine, but JUST COME OUT AND SAY IT. Let them say that they hate conservatives, and that they will ban anyone who shows support for a right wing political position. Spelling out their desires in writing would be very honest of them. The Hawley legislation would allow them to do that.

    I mean, you all but said the law should change to favor White supremacist propaganda

    No, I never said that, and I do NOT think that the law should ever favor white supremacists. Do not slander; it is very hateful of you to demonize me and pretend that I support a position that I don't. Equal rights are the ultimate counter to white supremacists

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:12pm

    Re:

    Their problem very clearly isn't bias on social media, it's that they want the 'bias' to be for the other side, their side.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:12pm

    Re: Contracting

    "If there is a complaint that the rules might be clearly spelled out is powerful evidence that bias is currently occurring on social media."

    How is complaining viewed as powerful evidence, I don't get it.
    Bias is occurring everywhere, are you suggesting that bias can be removed? I do not think so, how would this be accomplished? I doubt there is one single thing that everyone on this planet would agree upon, their reasons for disagreement probably also are biased. There is no getting rid of it. Now, for the hand waving attempt to qualify the request - I've seen it before.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:14pm

    another poster (TFG) is DEMANDING to see the moderation data

    You made assertions about that data. You must back them up. You have yet to do so.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:16pm

    Inch by inch closer to honesty...

    Give it a bit longer and at this rate he'll finally find the courage to admit that he doesn't want social media to engage in any moderation( so long as it impacts those he agrees with anyway), as while that is basically what this bill would do he's still trying to pretend otherwise.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:16pm

    Re:

    "In related news, scientists report that gravity is prejudiced against fat people."

    It's not the fall that hurts you,
    it's the rapid deceleration trauma.

    btw, overweight people would fall at the same rate as non overweight people, ignoring friction of course. They would however, impact with more force. Either way, it's gonna hurt.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  30. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:20pm

    Re:

    1) For things like rental agreements, credit cards, etc, people stand to lose money or a place to stay.

    There are a number of personalities and celebrities that have made big bucks by promoting themselves through social media. Aside from the money, you are right that rules are established when something is very important. That we also consider rules to guarantee freedom of speech alongside expensive housing or vehicle purchases shows just how important free speech is.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  31. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:24pm

    I believe the law should be changed to get social media companies that create an open platform for free discussion for all to live up to their promise. If they don't want to host certain content, that's fine, but JUST COME OUT AND SAY IT.

    Twitter does say that. What the fuck do you think the Terms of Service are?

    Let them say that they hate conservatives, and that they will ban anyone who shows support for a right wing political position. Spelling out their desires in writing would be very honest of them.

    Stop spewing such disingenuous bullshit. You can’t prove your superstition; until you can, I’ll continue referring to it as such.

    The Hawley legislation would allow them to do that.

    They can already do that without his shitty legislation.

    I never said that

    Hence “all but said”. You didn’t say it, but you sure as shit implied it with all your sidestepping and handwringing over One Simple Question.

    I do NOT think that the law should ever favor white supremacists

    And yet, you’ve all but said that White supremacists should have the favor of law when it comes to social media by way of having the law compel a service to host White supremacist propaganda.

    Do not slander; it is very hateful of you to demonize me and pretend that I support a position that I don't.

    If you don’t want me misinterpreting your position — even though you’ve already heavily implied that you hold the position I say you hold — you can clear everything up by answering “yes” or “no” to One Simple Question:

    Do you believe the government should force an open-to-the-public interactive computer service that you personally own and operate to host speech that you don’t want to host/want associated with you and your service?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:26pm

    The right to free speech is not equivalent to a rental agreement, you ignorant fool.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:27pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    or they stop all moderation, and let the racists, bigots and trolls drive most of their users away.

    Under the legislation, they would be permitted to define racist and bigoted speech, and then they could continue to moderate and ban.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:30pm

    They can already define racist/bigoted speech. An overwhelming amount of Mastodon instances do exactly that. For what reason do they need a new law saying they can do what they already do?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35. identicon
    Coffee U, 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    They also chose to ignore that Techdirt has had many pages demonetized because of comments. Poor TechDirt - censored all it's life!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36. icon
    Khym Chanur (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:38pm

    Defendants (sites) don't get awarded fees if they win.

    Under the proposal, if the plaintiff wins the defendant has to pay for attorney fees and such, but if the defendant wins each side has to pay for their own costs. So if a site enforces their ToS with complete fairness but some users think that it's being enforced unfairly the site has to eat the cost of each resulting lawsuit. In the face of that, how many sites would rather just forgo any moderation? (Even forgoing moderation wouldn't provide complete protection, since sites could still sued if some users believe the site to engage in shadow banning)

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:38pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    That won't stop them being taken to court every time they ban such speech. That results in people forcing them to spend money to defend their decisions, and they die a death of a thousand cuts while winning nearly every case.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:40pm

    Re:

    I'll give you an example -- if you see enough videos depicting police brutality against citizens, you might know that there's a problem. Even if the police don't release the data about how often this occurs, you still see a problem, and you want something to be done about it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:41pm

    Re:

    That's easy, so that when the bigots ever so slightly tweak their bigoted remarks to get around the precise prohibited terms the site can't punish them for it, and have to engage in a neverending game of catch-up all the while risking getting sued at any point for daring to moderate.

    Rigid moderation rules are a troll/bigot's wet dream, as without flexibility it is trivial to bypass the spirit of the rules even if technically you aren't in violation of the text.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40. identicon
    TFG, 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:46pm

    Re: Re:

    Where are the videos then?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:46pm

    Re:

    "Stephen," are you actually Mike Masnick in disguise? Your name is an internet ghost, and you post to almost everything here.

    Seems plausible.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:47pm

    Re: Re:

    The difference is that you don't have those videos(if you did you wouldn't desperately try to wiggle out of providing them, you'd simply do so), all you have is the equivalent of people saying that the police broke their arm and beat them black and blue yesterday all the while standing there with two perfectly fine arms and unblemished skin.

    Don't pretend that claims are at all equal to demonstrable proof, it's not going to work out well for you.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:50pm

    if you see enough videos depicting police brutality against citizens, you might know that there's a problem

    But those videos, on their own, don’t suggest such a problem is prevalent across all police departments in all cities in all the states. You’re asserting, with only anecdotal experience, that Twitter is guilty of having an “anti-conservative bias”. And you’re asserting this alleged bias exists only because of people self-identifying as conservatives instead of, say, such people using racial slurs and anti-queer speech that violates the Twitter TOS.

    Please offer proof that self-identified conservatives are being punished only for their political identity, or are being punished at disproportionate levels for TOS-violating speech used by self-identified liberals in equal amounts. Until you can do that, your superstition remains a superstition.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:50pm

    Re:

    Or as one AC quoted in an old article:

    One of the developers of Toontown Online, wanting to get around this problem while at the same time allowing players to interact, suggested using a list of approved words and sentence fragments that a user could string together to form full sentences. This idea was shot down by one of the other developers who had tried the approach in another game. The 14-year old boy who was testing the software was able to, within a minute, construct the following sentence: "I want to stick my long-necked Giraffe up your fluffy white bunny".

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 12:52pm

    That's easy, so that when the bigots ever so slightly tweak their bigoted remarks to get around the precise prohibited terms the site can't punish them for it, and have to engage in a neverending game of catch-up all the while risking getting sued at any point for daring to moderate.

    You know how we could prevent such lawsuits? We could give services such as Twitter the leeway to legally moderate speech as they see fit without having to worry about facing spurious lawsuits for those decisions.

    I wonder if we already have a law like that on the books~.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:00pm

    At least his idea does notbho.as far as those like kaka Harris want

    If this passes sorts will have to stopoderating content

    Making ISPs liable could cause enfieceabilty problems

    I know that people in parts of Montana get their internet from.wireleds providers in canada, who ate only s6bject to Canadian laws

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47. icon
    Koby (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:15pm

    Re:

    You're right, I think that it's MORE important, and therefore in more need of contractual protection.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48. identicon
    Rocky, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:18pm

    Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    Instead, the documented events of bias against conservatives has accumulated to the point where it has become undeniable to the general public.

    Documented? Undeniable? Then YOU should have no problems listing these undeniable and documented events of bias against conservatives.

    In short, put up or shut up!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:20pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Excuse me?
    Both left and right are full of lawsuit happy assholes. The right will scream about their "conservative" opinions being unjustly suppressed while the left will attack with PC bullshit and turn the internet into a "you didn't respect my choice of pronouns" nightmare. Then you have the technology terminology wars involving master, slave, blacklists, whitelists, etc.
    Nope. Neither the right, nor the left would have clean hands with the lawsuit nightmare that would be forthcoming

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:31pm

    Yes or no: Do you believe Twitter should be forced by law to host someone’s speech if that person is somehow deemed “important” by society, even if said person posts tweets that violate the Terms of Service?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  51. identicon
    Rocky, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:34pm

    Re: Re:

    the anti-conservative bias

    You and a horde of conservatives haven't yet managed to prove that any bias exist. All I see a bunch of people having a tantrum and because of that they want to take a dump all over the constitution.

    Once again, put up or shut up!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  52. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:37pm

    Re: Re:

    Your right to free speech is protection from the government stopping you publishing you speech at your own expense, or via a publisher that agrees to publish it. It does not say that you will find such a publisher or that you can force others to publish your speech.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  53. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:38pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Sorry, no, privileged authoritarians get way more upset and are far more likely to file suits.

    No one said the "left" was some sort of pristine garden. That's just you tilting at strawmen.

    And fuck you if you won't respect people's pronouns. Sorry it's so hard on your ass to not disrespect things like that for your amusement. No one sued anyone over it, unlike the hurt fee-fees what-passes-for-conservative-these-days set.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  54. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:40pm

    Re: Re:

    Right, right. So how much are they paying the platforms again?

    I'll wait.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  55. icon
    ECA (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:42pm

    Anyone..

    Get the idea, that someone Thinks they have little control of things, and wants it back?
    Understanding that the Internet is about the biggest/easiest way to see/hear/express opinions and what people want to know in a democracy.
    But we arnt a democracy.

    Anyone remember those sites that started up with the idea of Creating bills and petitions to send to congress??
    FAIL all to hell.
    Why? because everyone wanted THEIR own opinion and the way they expressed it. A site with 2 million subscribers, and 2 million suggested petitions. and reading thru them was a MESS from hell.

    If anyone went into it and Cleaned/joined/combined ANY of it, it would become a pissing match of Who is right and who is wrong. And whose opinion would do anything.

    It was Hilarious.
    The Worst part is those on the hill think they are better at it then we are.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  56. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    And thus you prove my point.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  57. identicon
    Rocky, 17 Jun 2020 @ 1:59pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    If someone tells you that they prefer to be referred to in female pronouns and you insist on using male ones, you are behaving like an asshole.

    It's the same thing as if a guy named David tells you not to call him Dave but you persist in doing that.

    Is it so fucking hard to accommodate people even if you perhaps find it stupid and silly?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  58. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 2:11pm

    Re:

    Reading your comment something rather funny stuck out to me, in that the very same person who said that if social media companies don't want to host certain content they should 'JUST COME OUT AND SAY IT'(they do, it's called the TOS), also refuses to give a plain answer to the question you keep asking them on hosting content.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  59. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 2:17pm

    You’d think he would try living up to what he demands of others, but apparently, hypocrisy and ignorance go hand-in-hand.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  60. icon
    Toom1275 (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 3:28pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    [projects facts not in evidence]

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  61. icon
    Toom1275 (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 3:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  62. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 3:42pm

    Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    The "documented" evidence of bias against whining cry-babies has accumulated to the point where they are going to call their "Mommy" Trump to fix the problem for everyone...

    I admit I see a lot of whining and crying by the alt-right, what I don't see is any actual evidence of biased moderation.

    Making a claim doesn't mean anything, I mean have you stopped beating your wife? No? See you are a wife beater plain and simple. Yes? Well you may be a reformed wife beater then... Easy to claim, harder to prove (look for the bruises...)

    Talk about bad faith! How soon until Google work closely with outside left wing groups to comb websites for undesirable comments? Don't hold your breath...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  63. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 3:53pm

    Re:

    Quick, everyone on the left wing start shit posting on Alt-Right and Conservative websites... give them a taste of their own crap.

    Crap post on as many conservative and alt-right websites and forums as you can, try to violate Google's terms of service so they demonetize the page (not the full site)... with enough postings we can wipe out the Alt-Right's resources to the point they won't have the capital to compete.

    I mean this is what the Alt-Right is currently doing on websites I follow, so lets all return the favor and show what being on the receiving end looks like...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Jun 2020 @ 3:57pm

    Re:

    Well, doesn't really matter what I think, because they are currently doing it and it's been proven (another account that posted Donald's tweet word for word was banned for violating the TOS... yes it was a stunt to prove a point, and it did exactly that).

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 4:02pm

    Re: Re:

    Uhh, no, that's not the same thing at all. There is a big difference between a platform choosing to host speech that they otherwise might choose to remove under different circumstances and them not having that choice to begin with, to be told 'You will host that speech, regardless of whether you want to or not.'

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 4:27pm

    No.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  67. icon
    Toom1275 (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 4:30pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    The only thing "anti-right bias!" whiners have ever provided evidence for is their inability to hanfle badic arithematic.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  68. icon
    techflaws (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 9:48pm

    Re: Re:

    Put up or shut up already.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  69. icon
    techflaws (profile), 17 Jun 2020 @ 9:50pm

    Re: Re:

    Seems plausible.

    To idiots like you. No surprise there.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  70. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Jun 2020 @ 12:31am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Looks that way to me, too.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  71. icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 18 Jun 2020 @ 2:01am

    Re: Contracting

    "Over the years, that one page grew to one page front&back, to two pages front &back, to five pages, then six with really tiny print. The contract size grew because there was a problem, and so they fixed it such that the expected outcome of the sale was spelled out in the contract, and noone could complain. It's been about the same size for the past few years now."

    In my current job I've managed to come across a few US-style contracts like the ones you describe - and I'm honestly always as surprised, with the standard EU legalese often being able to fit in a single A4 with 10-point font.

    It's so bad, in fact, that even major european companies often just say "No thanks" when a US company offers their boilerplate, because no company here believes it's a worthwhile investment to sink half it's development and maintenance budget into the legal department.

    "This is standard in our society. From rental agreements, to credit cards, to cell phones... Eventually, they work out the rules."

    And, I'd have to say, not a great way of doing things to begin with. Necessary because US basic laws and regulations leave vast loopholes around just how you can screw someone if they weren't smart enough to plug the hole in specific legalese but it does mean if you can't afford a team of lawyers on retainer, just give up on building a major company.

    "You're probably okay with accepting all the other agreements that are a part of daily life."

    Reality begs to differ, looking at all the major scandals arising out of hastily clicked-through 100-page EULA's etc. You are probably ok with simply not having been screwed yet. Or if you're a comcast customer, not so OK at having been told that yes you've been overcharged for years and no there's shit-all you can do about that since you didn't spend four hours of lawyer time second-checking the fine print.

    "If there is a complaint that the rules might be clearly spelled out is powerful evidence that bias is currently occurring on social media."

    That's...false. The current status is that the rules are clearly spelled out. The first amendment applies and section 230 confirms. The proposed bill makes the rules...ambiguous and confusing, demanding two conflicting opposite actions with harsh penalties imposed for violating either.

    But I confess I'm not too surprised, given the topic, to see you come out swinging in favor of legislation which screws you whatever you do if your intent was to operate an online platform.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  72. icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 18 Jun 2020 @ 2:04am

    Re: Re:

    "You're right, I think that it's MORE important, and therefore in more need of contractual protection."

    So that's why you argue in favor of nationalizing popular platforms by abolishing the rights of the owner of said property to determine who is and is not welcome in their house and home?

    You always dodge that very simple answer to a very simple question with very simple principles and very simple ramifications. And Koby? That tells us everything we need to know about just how serious you are with continually trying to market this shit.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  73. icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 18 Jun 2020 @ 2:06am

    Re:

    "In related news, scientists report that gravity is prejudiced against fat people."

    Unjustified slander. Gravity is equitable to everyone. It just keeps taking the rap for the clearly biased Higgs field.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  74. icon
    PaulT (profile), 18 Jun 2020 @ 3:02am

    Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    "To date, no major social media company has made their moderation data available"

    So, you're making it up when you make those claims, since you don't have evidence to support them. Good to know.

    "Today's example of bias on social media is yesterday's demonetization of The Federalist and Zerohedge websites"

    Yeah, people don't like paying for naked propaganda that's not based on evidence. Is that why you're such a mardy idiot? You're getting your data from fiction writers?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  75. icon
    PaulT (profile), 18 Jun 2020 @ 3:03am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Contracting

    "The orgs weren't demonetized"

    You mean he lied again, making up his own reality because the facts in the real one don't support his claim? Shocking...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  76. icon
    PaulT (profile), 18 Jun 2020 @ 3:06am

    Re: Re:

    "they are currently doing it"

    Do you understand the difference between doing something because you want to, and doing it because the government is forcing you to?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  77. identicon
    bobob, 18 Jun 2020 @ 9:33am

    Personally, I think legislsation like this which is considered "dumb" from our perspective is probably not dumb at all if you take into account what's driving it, which is the personal interests of the people backing it. I'd guess that vagueness is deliberate. If it's vague, it will appeal to the widest audience which in general are not the people who look at the consequences in the future.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  78. icon
    Thad (profile), 18 Jun 2020 @ 10:24am

    Re:

    Personally, I think legislsation like this which is considered "dumb" from our perspective is probably not dumb at all if you take into account what's driving it, which is the personal interests of the people backing it.

    No, Josh Hawley is really, really dumb.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  79. icon
    Bergman (profile), 18 Jun 2020 @ 5:09pm

    Re:

    As it's phrased, it's not just moderation - you could sue Senator Hawley for putting his own picture on his own website, just because you don't like his looks!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  80. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 Jun 2020 @ 7:38am

    Re: Re:

    "I don't actually like Donald Trump," gasped Koby, "But I'll bend over backwards if I hear anyone insult him."

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  81. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Joe, 21 Jun 2020 @ 12:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You're right, I want you to call by the pronoun "my lord my master" from now on.

    Is it so fucking hard to accommodate people eve if you perhaps find it stupid and silly.

    If not the above, then please refer to me as the pronoun "Rocky's mom is a whore for living."

    C'mon, it's not that hard to accommodate me.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  82. icon
    PaulT (profile), 21 Jun 2020 @ 3:23am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Why go to any trouble when you just labelled yourself a hateful ignorant dickhead? That works in place of both.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  83. icon
    nasch (profile), 21 Jun 2020 @ 9:34am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    C'mon, it's not that hard to accommodate me.

    Come back after you've figured out what a pronoun is.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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