FCC Democrats Can't Reconcile Net Neutrality Deregulation, Section 230 Initiative

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Democrats on the Federal Communications Commission are taking issue with Chairman Ajit Pai's announcement that the agency would clarify edge providers' Section 230 immunity from civil liability over third-party content, as the White House has asked. Chairman Pai also said he has been assured by commission lawyers that it has the authority to do so. Democrats pointed out that the FCC had cited Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996 in defending its elimination of net neutrality regulations and its adoption of an "information services" definition for internet access that squared better with Section 230's grant of immunity that allowed the marketplace more freedom. Section 230 allows social media sites to host third-party speech without being subject to legal action based on the content that is posted or what they do with it. Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel pointed out that Section 230 had been in the news lately as "we all grapple with the frustrations of social media" -- and she noted that the FCC was trying to have it both ways in upholding its net deregulation and pursuing its Section 230 clarification. Commissioner Geoffrey Starks echoed that sentiment.

FCC Dems Can't Reconcile ISP Dereg, Section 230 Initiative