Congress enacted Section 230 to foster the growth of the internet by providing certain immunities for internetbased technology companies. Section 230 contains two key immunity provisions. The first specifies that a provider of an interactive computer service shall not "be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider," effectively exempting internet social media and networking services from liability under laws that apply to publishers, authors, and speakers. The second provides "good Samaritan" protection for providers who, in good faith, remove or moderate content that is obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise objectionable.
While Section 230 has played an important role in development of the internet as a platform for the global exchange of information and ideas, the internet has evolved in unanticipated ways since 1996. Today, a small number of large companies operate social media platforms that millions use for information and public discourse. Concentration of power, disinformation (including sophisticated disinformation campaigns), abuse on social media (hate speech, harassment, bullying, and discriminatory practices), use of algorithms to amplify and target content and advertising, and lack of transparency in content moderation have become issues of increasing concern. There are many opinions regarding potential solutions, including about whether (or by what means) Section 230 should be revised.
On April 22 and 27, 2021, the Committee on Science, Technology, and Law of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine convened a virtual workshop titled Section 230 Protections: Can Legal Revisions or Novel Technologies Limit Online Misinformation and Abuse? Participants and presenters explored the legal, policy, and technological aspects of Section 230 and its relationship with such critical issues as free speech, privacy, and civil rights. The workshop also addressed concerns about internet immunity protections while preserving free speech and democratic norms. This publication summarizes the presentation and discussion of the workshop.
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Section 230 Protections: Can Legal Revisions or Novel Technologies Limit Online Misinformation and Abuse?: Proceedings of a Workshop–in Brief. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. https://doi.org/10.17226/26280.
|Section 230 Protections: Can Legal Revisions or Novel Technologies Limit Online Misinformation and Abuse?: Proceedings of a Workshopin Brief||1-13|
The Chapter Skim search tool presents what we've algorithmically identified as the most significant single chunk of text within every page in the chapter. You may select key terms to highlight them within pages of each chapter.
The National Academies Press (NAP) has partnered with Copyright Clearance Center's Rightslink service to offer you a variety of options for reusing NAP content. Through Rightslink, you may request permission to reprint NAP content in another publication, course pack, secure website, or other media. Rightslink allows you to instantly obtain permission, pay related fees, and print a license directly from the NAP website. The complete terms and conditions of your reuse license can be found in the license agreement that will be made available to you during the online order process. To request permission through Rightslink you are required to create an account by filling out a simple online form. The following list describes license reuses offered by the National Academies Press (NAP) through Rightslink:
Click here to obtain permission for the above reuses. If you have questions or comments concerning the Rightslink service, please contact:
Rightslink Customer Care
Tel (toll free): 877/622-5543
To request permission to distribute a PDF, please contact our Customer Service Department at 800-624-6242 for pricing.
To request permission to translate a book published by the National Academies Press or its imprint, the Joseph Henry Press, pleaseclick here to view more information.