Law in the Internet Society

So, the gist of the Douek article I shared is that we as a society need to abandon any fiction that online content moderation will ever actually be able to perfectly adhere to and uphold principles of free speech. Instead, we need accept the notion that private social media companies are going to be driven to balance speech interests with other societal interests, and so the proper questions we must ask are (1) how high of an error rate are we willing to accept in the moderation of online content, and (2) what types of errors are we willing to accept? I'm inclined to agree to the extent that so long as online content is predominantly concentrated on a few websites, free speech is simply off the table; these companies have too much of a profit motive to just let content run wild like it did in the old days.

But what if we didn't do our sharing on centralized services, but actually used the "world wide web" as designed? If we each published what we wanted ourselves, and allowed others to request notification of (or subscribe to) what we write, why would "moderation" mean anything more or less than the editorial control that any publisher (from ourselves to the management of the New York Times) exercises, which of course balances responsibility against the desire to be read? It's the peculiar structure in which the platforms have less responsibility than other publishers (under the fiction that they are mere conduits who exercise no control over what is published) while being constantly held responsible by government for moderation that creates the incoherent situation that Douck says we have to accept, even though it would be better to reject. Another way of thinking about this can be found in a piece my law partner and I published recently in the Times of India.

-- JohnJMartin93 - 16 Sep 2020 -- JeremyLee - 16 Sep 2020% COMMENT%

Student 1: I would like to learn more about the relationship between free speech and content moderation on internet platforms

Student 2: Evelyn Douek recently wrote a good article on this:


Webs Webs

r3 - 16 Sep 2020 - 21:42:38 - EbenMoglen
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