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What is “Section 230,” and why do many lawmakers want to repeal it?

CBS News: “Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act helped create the modern internet. Now the regulation is at the center of a high-stakes political battle that could reshape how we use social media, mobile apps and the open web. President Donald Trump and some Republicans in Congress have pushed to repeal the law, while Big Tech CEOs have signaled support for modifying it — although no one can agree on how.  Here’s what you need to know about the controversial law, its flaws and why the prospect of killing it off in a fell swoop worries experts…The regulation states, “No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”  What that means in practice is that internet companies — everything from social media platforms to online retailers to news sites — are generally not liable if a user posts something illegal. Backers of Section 230 credit in part for the success of companies like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, which depend on vast amounts of user-generated content. “[It’s] part of the architecture of the modern internet,” said David Greene, senior staff attorney and Civil Liberties Director for the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “Everything you do online depends on it.” Before Section 230 became law, internet services were required to be aware of and responsible for everything on their sites. “The existing law could not scale to meet the needs of the internet in 1996 and certainly wouldn’t scale today,” Greene said…”

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