NetChoice Cases: The First Amendment a back-to-back champ at the Supreme Court

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The First Amendment is a back-to-back champ.

In an opinion delivered on Monday, the nation’s highest court sent back two separate cases brought by industry association NetChoice and other parties against the states of both Texas and Florida for their recent social media laws.

These laws tied the hands of social media companies by not allowing them to moderate the content on their platforms, which would have First Amendment implications.

Yaël Ossowski, deputy director of the consumer advocacy group Consumer Choice Center, responds:

“The issues of social media censorship and jawboning by government agencies are both legitimate and concerning for citizens and online users across the country. Thankfully, however, the Supreme Court recognized that the lawsuits concerning laws passed by both Texas and Florida have not done a proper evaluation of the First Amendment applications and protections afforded to social media companies as well as users,” said Ossowski.

“While this battle will rage on, it is clear that the First Amendment is a clear back-to-back winner in the courts, and we as Internet users and consumers are better off as a result. We are all concerned about getting booted or censored on social media, but it is not by tying the hands of social media networks and forcing them to carry certain information or profiles that we will achieve freer speech online,” added Ossowski.

“Inviting the government to weigh in on content decisions made by private Internet companies is an obvious path to abuse, and one that the NetChoice cases demonstrate rather well. We hope these cases in the lower courts are reconsidered with good faith for the protections that the First Amendment offers while remaining cautious of yet more state regulation of what happens on the Internet.

“The future of free speech online and the First Amendment depend on rejecting overly broad state laws that force content decisions that undermind Section 230,” concluded Ossowski.

About the Consumer Choice Center:

The Consumer Choice Center is a non-profit organization dedicated to defending the rights of consumers around the world. Our mission is to promote freedom of choice, healthy competition, and evidence-based policies that benefit consumers. We work to ensure that consumers have access to a variety of quality products and services and can make informed decisions about their lifestyle and consumption. 

Find out more at www.consumerchoicecenter.org

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