The bill has powerful backers in the Senate, including Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R), Richard Blumenthal (D) and Dianne Feinstein (D). In a statement introducing the bill, Blumenthal said “Tech companies have an extraordinary special safeguard against legal liability, but that unique protection comes with a responsibility. Companies that fail to comport with basic standards that protect children from exploitation have betrayed the public trust granted them by this special exemption. Online platforms’ near complete immunity from legal responsibility is a privilege – they have to earn it – and that’s what our bipartisan bill requires.”
Online platforms’ near complete immunity from legal responsibility is a privilege—they have to earn it—& that’s what Senator @LindseyGrahamSC & my bipartisan bill the EARN IT Act requires.
— Richard Blumenthal (@SenBlumenthal) March 5, 2020
The EFF has previously spoken out about drafts of the legislation and the danger of undermining Section 230, and activists are already organizing against the legislation. Tech Freedom president Berin Szóka claimed in a response that “today’s largely effective system for policing CSAM (child sex abuse material) will come crashing down overnight — and those convicted of generating, disseminating and consuming CSAM could walk free.”
A Judiciary Committee hearing on the bill is already scheduled to take place on Wednesday, March 11th at 10 AM ET.
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