On May 24th, 2021, the Governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis signed Senate Bill 7072– “[A] sweeping set of restrictions on how the companies that run . . . [social media] websites shall moderate what is said on them.” The bill “impos[es] severe restrictions on the editorial freedom of large social media platforms,” such as Facebook and Twitter. It would require such platforms to display any and all posts by registered political candidates and media organizations, even if the posts violate the platforms’ “rules of conduct.” Governor DeSantis said the purpose of the bill is to ensure that “real Floridians . . . are guaranteed protection against the Silicon Valley elites.” Proponents of the bill view it as an attempt to “tak[e] back the virtual public square as a place where information and ideas can flow freely.” The bill has many supporters, including Lieutenant Governor Nunez, State Senate President Wilton Simpson, Speaker Chris Sprowls, State Senator Ray Rodrigues, and State Representative Blaise Ingoglia. All of them had words of support for the piece of legislation.
This post was originally published on the Cardozo Arts & Entertainment Law Journal website on March 7,2022. The original post can be accessed via the Archived Link button above.
Saleemi, Mamoon, "Senate Bill 7072: A Stand Against Big Tech or a Violation of the First Amendment?" (2022). AELJ Blog. 313.