BUFFALO, N.Y. — In two opinions earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court chose to hold social media companies Twitter and Google accountable for promoting terrorist activity on their platforms and failing to filter them.
Syracuse Crandall Melvin Law Professor Shuva Ghosh said the case had similarities to two cases currently pending in the New York State Supreme Court, which said the case was linked to victims of the Buffalo Tops mass murder. bereaved families are calling for multiple platforms to be held accountable.
“The court never said such a lawsuit was impossible. It just said that the parties did not file claims in the Twitter and Google lawsuits involving the bombings in Turkey and the Islamic State,” Ghosh said. said Mr.
Ghosh, director of the SU Technology Commercialization Law Program and Intellectual Property Law Program, said it may be difficult to make the argument that social media algorithms caused the shooter to kill 10 black people and injure others. said no.
“There are some creative defenses that can be made here, but in the Google case, it’s not exactly the term addiction loop that Google helps monetize ISIS activity, profit from it, and is affected by it.” “There was a notion that the video and its propaganda were disseminated to vulnerable people and socially vulnerable groups,” he said.
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act is a law passed by Congress in the early days of the Internet to address concerns about websites’ unlimited liability in defamation lawsuits. Ghosh said that in the past few decades, it has only added one exception to sex trafficking that Congress has allowed victims to hold platforms accountable for in some cases.
In this year’s opinion, the court could have set a precedent for extending immunity for violence, but it didn’t.
“Going back to the Supreme Court’s opinion posted on Twitter and Google earlier this year, the reason the court sidestepped the 230 issue is because they wanted Congress to address the issue before the court did. I think,” he said.
He said the lawsuit would ultimately come down to the facts of the case that could differ significantly from those related to the ISIS bombings in Turkey.
“I think one of the key differences here is that the platform is being used to broadcast the event live, which raises a different set of policies,” Ghosh said.