(Miami) A federal judge has blocked a law passed by the state of Florida to prevent social networks from blocking content posted by political candidates, saying the move is “completely unconstitutional.”
In a decision released Wednesday evening, Judge Robert Hinkle was of the opinion that the law, signed into effect by Florida Governor Ron Desantis on Thursday, would distort the principle of protecting freedom of expression by imposing certain restrictions on content control.
The text was adopted in response to former President Donald Trump’s Twitter and Facebook boycott, with some criticizing it as an attack on conservatives.
For the judge, the law provides only vague definitions of relevant forums and overturns the notion of protecting the freedom of expression guaranteed by the First Amendment of the American Constitution.
“The First Amendment does not limit the rights of private companies that do not perform traditional public service duties […] 31, wrote the judge in his 31-page decision.
He believes the law “binds providers of social networks who are considered too important and too generous.” But “it is not in the interest of the government to balance the exchange of ideas between private actors”.
La SB 7072, which came into force on the 1stIs In July, platforms blocking a candidate for a state-level position were fined 250 250,000 per day.
The law allowed Floridians who felt that tech companies had treated them unfairly for financial compensation.
For Matt Shrews, a lobbyist for the CCIA, a tech giant calling for the law to be repealed, the decision was “encouraging.”
He said the law passed by Florida was “an extraordinary extension, designed to penalize private companies for what they considered to be a disrespect to government political ideology.”