Texas HB20 protects violent, racist, and harmful content online
On Tuesday night, a group of 20 industry and civil society organizations filed an amicus brief at the Supreme Court opposing a Texas social media law (HB20) obligating online platforms to carry hate speech, disinformation, and other harmful content. The law, which recently took effect following an appellate court decision, is headed to the Supreme Court following an emergency appeal by plaintiffs in the case.
The organizations — including family safety advocates, civil rights organizations, and technology industry associations — support NetChoice and the Consumer & Communications Industry Association’s request for the Supreme Court to vacate the order that allowed the law to take effect.
The brief makes the case that the new law hurts consumers by preventing online providers from taking down harmful content. The brief argues:
“At present, platforms rely on content moderation to ensure that millions of Americans can work, play, learn, shop, connect, and express themselves on online platforms free from harassment, disinformation, and incendiary content. But, by foreclosing any meaningful ability of platforms to engage in content curation, HB20 erases their very utility and threatens severe harm to platforms and to their users.”
The organizations signing the brief include:
- Chamber of Progress
- Anti-Defamation League
- Connected Commerce Council
- Consumer Technology Association
- Engine Advocacy
- Family Online Safety Institute
- HONR Network Inc.
- Information Technology & Innovation Foundation
- Interactive Advertising Bureau
- IP Justice
- LGBT Tech Institute
- Multicultural Media, Telecom and Internet Council
- National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
- National Hispanic Media Coalition
- Our Vote Texas
- Software and Information Industry Association
- Stop Child Predators
- Texas State Conference of the NAACP
- Washington Center for Technology Policy Inclusion
Later today, Chamber of Progress will host a virtual press conference, along with Texas lawmakers and anti-hate advocates to discuss the impacts of Texas’s new anti-content moderation law. To attend the press conference, register here.
Chamber of Progress (progresschamber.org) is a center-left tech industry policy coalition promoting technology’s progressive future. We work to ensure that all Americans benefit from technological leaps, and that the tech industry operates responsibly and fairly.
Our corporate partners do not have a vote on or veto over our positions. We do not speak for individual partner companies and remain true to our stated principles even when our partners disagree.