U.S. Supreme Court “Google and Twitter are not liable even if terrorist groups abuse social media”

The US Supreme Court has ruled that Google and Twitter cannot be held legally liable under the ‘Anti-Terrorism Act’ for servicing content uploaded by terrorist groups. In the controversy over online posts, the IT industry raised its hand.
ⓒ Magdalena Petrova

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas unanimously judged the so-called ‘Twitter vs. Taamneh‘ Through the judgment of the lawsuit, it was pointed out that the plaintiff, a Jordanian family member who died in the terrorism, had not clearly demonstrated the claim for relief. The basis of the lawsuit filed by the bereaved family against Twitter was the Anti-Terrorism Act, and Twitter saw that it could not take legal responsibility for the terrorist incident, only providing the platform used by ISIS. “Plaintiff has failed to prove that the defendant (Twitter) provided actual assistance in this attack and consciously participated in the attack, and it is difficult to conclude that the defendant systematically assisted in all of the ISIS attacks,” Thomas explained.

This ruling focused only on the anti-terrorism law. Article 230 of the Communications Act, which exempts IT companies that operate services such as Facebook and Twitter from legal obligations for the contents of posts, was not covered.

Instead, this part came out on the same day’Gonzalez vs. google‘ You can check it through the opinion on the lawsuit. The point is that the logic of the two events is substantially similar and the outcome is the same. ‘Gonzalez vs. The issue in the ‘Google’ case is whether Google can be held legally responsible for the exposure of terrorism-related content on YouTube operated by Google. Regarding this, the Supreme Court explained, “A significant part of the plaintiff’s arguments are difficult to cite. In this case, there seems to be little validity among the plaintiff’s arguments, so we decided not to apply Article 230.”

Meanwhile, Article 230 of the Communications Act has been a subject of considerable controversy. The IT industry feared that a weakening of the disclaimer would increase the risk of lawsuits against all content posted on Twitter, Facebook, and other social media, which could lead to service disruption. With this ruling, the possibility of the Supreme Court overturning an existing precedent that exempted IT companies from legal responsibility for content posted on the Internet virtually disappeared.
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Source: ITWorld Korea by www.itworld.co.kr.

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