11th Circuit Rebukes Bulk of DeSantis' Florida Social Media Law

11th Circuit Rebukes Bulk of DeSantis' Florida Social Media Law

ATLANTA — The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling today blocking the major provisions of Gov. Ron DeSantis’ controversial Florida’s social media law, which would have held social media platforms liable for moderation policies in the name of political, but not sexual, "free speech."

The court decided that it is “unconstitutional for Florida to bar social media companies from banning politicians, in a major victory for tech companies currently fighting another appeals court ruling that allowed a similar law in Texas to take effect,” the Washington Post reported.

The 11th Circuit’s opinion unequivocally established that platform moderation decisions are protected by the First Amendment.

The 67-page opinion also “harshly criticized arguments that social media platforms should be considered ‘common carriers’ subject to government regulation.”

The judges, however, also ruled that “some provisions could stand, including that people banned from the platforms should be able to access their data for 60 days and disclosure provisions, such as clear content standards,” the Post reported.

“We conclude that social media platforms’ content-moderation activities — permitting, removing, prioritizing and deprioritizing users and posts — constitute ‘speech’ within the meaning of the First Amendment,” the judges noted.

The 11th Circuit’s decision contrasts with the recent decision by the 5th Circuit upholding a similar Texas law. Both laws and the disparate decisions by the appeals courts will now be considered by the Supreme Court.

As XBIZ reported, the unusual 5th Circuit decision was communicated earlier this month without any explanation as to the court’s reasoning and with two of the judges remaining anonymous.

Main Image: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) signing the so-called "Free Speech" law on May 24, 2021

Copyright © 2024 Adnet Media. All Rights Reserved. XBIZ is a trademark of Adnet Media.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.

More News

X's Porn-Recognition AI Survives Illinois' Biometric Privacy Law Challenge

A lawsuit filed under Illinois’ unusual state law targeting biometric data collection has spotlighted an AI program used by X since 2015 to identify nudity and NSFW images.

Byborg's Le Shaw Research Institute Teams Up With Cupcake Girls

LiveJasmin parent company Byborg Enterprises’ Le Shaw International Sexual Health and Wellness Research Institute has joined forces with U.S.-based sex worker advocacy group The Cupcake Girls.

Anti-Pornhub Attorney Expands Strategy to 'Name and Shame' Finance Companies

A legal team headed by attorney Michael J. Bowe has expanded its strategy in a series of ongoing legal actions against Aylo, over user-uploaded content on Pornhub allegedly involving minors, this time targeting finance companies that have backed or worked with the company formerly known as Mindgeek.

X3 Expo 2025 Show Dates Set for Jan. 17-18

X3 Expo organizers have announced that the event will once again take over the historic Hollywood Palladium Jan. 17-18, bringing together legions of attendees for the biggest lineup of adult stars in North America, plus a smorgasbord of dazzlingly attractions showcasing the latest innovations in titillating digital entertainment.

SextPanther Unveils New Content-Tagging Feature, Revamped Explore Page

SextPanther has rolled out its new content-tagging feature, as well as the revamped version of the platform's "Explore" page.

Court Orders xHamster to Remove Dutch Amateur Content

An Amsterdam appeals court upheld a lower court decision ordering xHamster to remove all footage featuring Dutch people who have not given explicit permission for their images to be posted.

Dutch Platform DM-Movies Rebrands as MelodyPleasure.com

Industry veterans Melody Pleasure and Cheffie Shot have rebranded Dutch platform DM-Movies.com into MelodyPleasure.com.

Mymember.site Unveils New Order Management System for Sales

Mymember.site has released a new order management system designed to streamline and simplify how creators manage incoming orders for digital and physical products.

European Commission Compels Pornhub, XVideos, Stripchat to Disclose DSA Compliance Data

The European Commission has singled out Pornhub, XVideos and Stripchat for enforcement of the Digital Services Act (DSA), giving them until July 4 to provide compliance information.

X's Clarification of Adult Content Policy Triggers International Confusion

X’s recent clarification of its adult content policies has created confusion in countries with strict anti-porn laws, such as Indonesia, especially considering that X owner Elon Musk has stated that the limits of his “free speech absolutism” for the platform formerly known as Twitter are the laws of each country.

Show More