Freedom of Speech: X sues California content moderation law
Social network X (formerly Twitter) on Friday sued California under the Content Moderation Act (AB-587). Elon Musk’s deems objectionable, delete”. This is reported by Reuters.
Form des Redezwangs
With the transparency rules – signed by California Governor Gavin Newsom in September 2022 – California is forcing the affected platforms to “adopt the state’s views on politically explosive topics, which in and of itself is a form of compulsory speech,” says X. And further : The law, known as Assembly Bill 587, violates the right to free speech under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and the California State Constitution.
Even when it was signed, there were fears that AB-587 could violate freedom of expression. On the other hand, there were concerns that the California law and the associated disclosure of moderation rules would provide malicious actors with ways to subvert the system.
discrimination and hate speech
After Musk’s takeover of Twitter, hate speech and discrimination against Jews, African Americans, homosexuals and transgender people on the platform skyrocketed, according to observers. Musk himself recently blamed Jewish organizations for the loss in advertising revenue. These collapsed shortly after the change of ownership when countless Twitter employees were laid off – including content moderators.
AB-587 requires social media companies with gross annual revenue of at least $100 million to, among other things, issue semi-annual reports describing content moderation practices and providing data on the number of objectionable posts and how they were addressed. Failure to comply could result in civil penalties of up to $15,000 per violation per day.
Musk faces a tough road
California Attorney General Rob Bonta’s office, which is responsible for enforcing state law, will respond to the complaint in court, Reuters reports.
A previous legal battle over California’s content moderation law suggests that Musk could face a difficult road ahead. Last month, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit against AB-587 on the grounds that “plaintiffs had not alleged an actual danger posed by the measure,” Bloomberg reports.
The case is X Corp v. Bonta, US District Court, Eastern District of California, No. 23-at-00903.
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