New Bill Would Remove Section 230 Protections for Social Media

Person holding iPhone navigating to an app folder filled with social media apps.

Introduced on Thursday, a bill called the Health Misinformation Act would hold social media companies responsible for spreading conspiracies and misinformation about vaccines, COVID cures, and more (via ArsTechnica).

Health Misinformation Act

The bill [PDF] was sponsored by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Sen. Ben Ray Luján (D-NM). It aims to strip social media companies from some of the protection they receive under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. Because of this act, certain companies can’t be held liable for the content posted on their platforms.

It wouldn’t entirely remove the immunity; instead it would reduce the protections during public health emergencies declared by the Department of Health and Human Services.

The act specifically takes aim at the types of algorithms these companies use. If posts are displayed using a “neutral mechanism” they wouldn’t have to be removed.

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