Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Dailywire Article-Babylon Bee, Tim Pool File Lawsuit Against California Attorney General Over New Social Media Law

Posted by M. C. on April 13, 2023

By  Brandon Drey

Hans Gutknecht/MediaNews Group/Los Angeles Daily News via Getty Images

Babylon Bee CEO Seth Dillon said Wednesday that the satire outlet, podcaster Tim Pool, and Minds, Inc. filed a lawsuit against California’s attorney general, alleging a new law regulating social media companies violates the First Amendment.

In a Substack post, Dillon wrote that the plaintiffs filed the complaint against California attorney general Rob Bonta to stop state officials from enforcing AB 587, a new law that took effect this year that requires social media companies to file quarterly reports detailing content moderation policies with the Attorney General’s Office.

Such content moderation policies include several speech categories the state could label as misinformation/disinformation, extremism/radicalization, and hate speech. Failing to file reports could lead to the state imposing fines for non-compliance.

According to the lawsuit, AB 587 was “written with the express intent to discourage expression” of constitutionally protected viewpoints and failed the vagueness doctrine of the Fourteenth Amendment, which requires criminal laws to state explicitly and definitely what conduct is punishable.

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