Posts Tagged ‘Section 230’

Section 230 Communications Decency Act Immunity: How to Use It and How to Lose It

Monday, June 8th, 2009

The Communications Decency Act (CDA) provides immunity to an internet service provider that merely publishes user-generated content, as long as its actions do not rise to the level of a content provider. Simply put, the closer the internet service provider is to a service provider than to a content provider, the more likely that the Section 230 immunity will apply. CDA immunity is often sought by internet service providers when parties file defamation and related torts against the website operator. Continue reading Section 230 Communications Decency Act Immunity: How to Use It and How to Lose It »

Web Agreements Must Address User-Generated Content in Order to Receive Section 230 Immunity

Monday, June 8th, 2009

So many websites today are driven by user-generated content. While all websites should contain website agreements, such as terms of use, privacy policy, and a copyright policy, those websites that allow for user-generated content should absolutely ensure that they have such agreements.  For sites with UGC, web site owners need to ensure that they are protected by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act if possible. In particular, the following should be considered: Continue reading Web Agreements Must Address User-Generated Content in Order to Receive Section 230 Immunity »

How To Know When Section 230 Communications Decency Act Immunity Applies

Friday, May 29th, 2009

When dealing with user-generated content, the issue often arises whether immunity under the Communications Decency Act, Section 230 , applies so as to shield the computer service provider from liability for information originating with a third party user of the service.  Courts generally address three separate inquiries when determining an answer.  The court will look to the following: Continue reading How To Know When Section 230 Communications Decency Act Immunity Applies »

User Generated Content: Section 230 Immunity Exception Requires That You Not Be An Information Content Provider

Friday, May 29th, 2009

Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, commonly referred to as Section 230 by those in internet law space, provides immunity from civil liability for both providers of and users of “an interactive computer service” that publish information provided by others.  This essentially shields web hosts from liability for user-generated content that may be deemed unlawful.  As we learned in the Fair Housing Council of San Fernando Valley v. Roommates.com case as well as subsequent decisions , in order to avail oneself of the immunity offered under Section 230, the defendant must not be an “information content provider”. Continue reading User Generated Content: Section 230 Immunity Exception Requires That You Not Be An Information Content Provider »

Section 230 Communications Decency Act of 1996

Wednesday, March 25th, 2009

Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996 (CDA), 47 U.S.C. § 230 , immunizes providers of interactive computer services from liability from user generated content.  An "interactive computer service" is defined as "any information service, system, or access software provider that providers or enables computer access by multiples users to a computer server."  The CDA specifically states that "No provider . . . of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider."  Thus, as long the computer service provider is not also an information content provider, or someone "responsible, in whole or in part, for the creation or development of" the offending conduct, the immunity of the CDA applies. Continue reading Section 230 Communications Decency Act of 1996 »