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Supreme Court Hears Case to Decide Future of Social Media Censorship

Photo from Ian Hutchinson via Unsplash

Supreme Court Hears Case to Decide Future of Social Media Censorship

By Movieguide® Contributor

Earlier this week, the Supreme Court began hearing a case that will decide the future of social media platforms’ rights to censor content.

The case will determine the constitutionality of current laws in Texas and Florida that limit the power of social media platforms to censor content on their sites. These laws were passed in response to the consistent censorship of right-leaning politicians and public figures who have been silenced for sharing their opinions.

While this silencing is continuously happening, it is most notable on polarizing topics, such as the pandemic or gender issues, which has caused thousands of right-leaning users to be banned or shadow-banned by the sites.

To combat this unfair treatment, the Florida law prohibits platforms from banning users who are candidates for public office or are engaged in “journalistic enterprise.” Texas, meanwhile, prohibits social media sites from removing content based on a viewpoint.

Recently, however, the Florida law was struck down by an appellate court, while the Texas law was confirmed by a court, setting the stage for the constitutionality of these laws to be judged by the Supreme Court.

While the laws were made to protect the First Amendment rights of users, social media giants argue that the laws violate their First Amendment rights because they take away their ability to monitor the content on their platforms. They argue that they are allowed to choose what is seen on their sites, similar to how newspapers decide the stories they print.

The decision, in this case, will prove monumental to the future of social media as it could force platforms to stop their liberal-leaning biases or allow them to further control the narratives that are most visible among users. This will be especially important in the upcoming year as the 2024 election heats up.

Movieguide® previously reported:

The Supreme Court will soon field three cases related to politicians’ use of social media to decide what the First Amendment does and does not protect.

“Collectively, they are likely to have quite [a] dramatic effect on the digital public sphere,” said Jameel Jaffer, executive director of the Knight Firsts Amendment Institute at Columbia University.

The first case, which began this week, surrounds the question of whether elected officials are serving in their official capacities when interacting on social media. This is important as it would dictate whether elected officials are allowed to block followers on social media without violating the First Amendment.

The next case will decide social media platforms’ ability to block users who share contentious rhetoric on the site. Politicians have attacked platforms in the past for censoring their posts, leading to laws in Florida and Texas limiting social media platforms’ abilities to censor politicians.

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Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.

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4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.

Movieguide® is a 501c3 and all donations are tax deductible.