Supreme Court to hear First Amendment challenge over state laws targeting social media censorship

The Supreme Court on Friday announced it will hear a major First Amendment dispute over social media laws in Florida and Texas targeting censorship during the high court’s upcoming term.

In Texas, lawmakers enacted a law in 2021 prohibiting social media companies from removing and moderating content that some might find offensive or hateful. It also required the companies to disclose certain business practices, such as the use of algorithms.

A federal court in Texas blocked parts of the law from taking effect. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed that ruling but kept the injunction in place pending appeal.

Also in 2021, Florida lawmakers enacted a law that placed a fine of $25,000 to $250,000 per day on large social media companies that de-platform political candidates.

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida and the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals blocked the law from taking effect because of First Amendment concerns.

It took at least four justices to vote in favor of hearing the appeals, though they were not identified Friday.

The cases are Moody v Netchoice and Netchoice v Paxton.

Source: WT