Free speech was the big winner and Big Tech was the big loser in a recent Texas court case.
Two organizations had taken the state of Texas to court after it passed a law banning Social media corporations, with over 50 million monthly users, from censoring speech on their platforms based on the user’s political leanings.
PJ Media provides more details:
On Sept. 9, 2021, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed House Bill 20 into law. In a statement, Abbott summarized the new law:
“House Bill 20 prevents social media companies with more than 50 million monthly users banning users simply based on their political viewpoints. The law also requires several consumer protection disclosures and processes related to content management on the social media sites to which the bill applies. These sites must disclose their content management and moderation policies and implement a complaint and appeals process for content they remove, providing a reason for the removal and a review of their decision. They also must review and remove illegal content within 48 hours. House Bill 20 also prohibits email service providers from impeding the transmission of email messages based on content.”
The law was promptly challenged by NetChoice and the Computer & Communications Industry Association. They argued that tech companies have a First Amendment right to select and curate the content people post on their platforms. They were able to get the new law blocked, but Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton appealed that decision — and won.