Section 230, explained

The use of social media is not in any way uncommon these days, but not many people are aware that they could be sued for something they post.
The main point is individual users can be sued for the content they post, but platforms generally cannot. Some may wonder what allows for an individual to be sued? The answer lies in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which was passed in 1996, allows companies like Facebook, Google, and Twitter to largely regulate themselves. With the new presidential administration taking office, there is a possibility of Section 230 being repealed. Former President Donald Trump would like to see that happen.
“We have to get rid of Section 230, or you’re not going to have a country very long,” Trump stated at a rally in Georgia on the night of December 28.
Ever since Section 230 was passed 24 years ago, some changes have been made to improve it. According to USA Today on January 4, 2018, Section 230 began to be changed through legislation that allowed lawsuits for sex trafficking to occur on media platforms.
One of the main arguments for revising Section 230 is that social media platforms should be more strict on what can and cannot be posted.
Congress was encouraged to revise Section 230 by Democrats including President Joe Biden to remove hate speech and extremism, election interference, and falsehoods. On the other side of the political spectrum, Republicans have voiced an opinion on the use of Section 230. Along with Trump, many other Republicans have accused tech companies of censoring conservatives and limiting their outreach on social media.
Jeff Kosseff, assistant professor of cybersecurity law in the US Naval Academy’s Cyber Science Department, spoke with USA Today with his opinion and knowledge of the issue.
“If Section 230 were repealed, platforms would conduct more moderation, not less, because of the increased risk of their liability for content users’ posts,” Kosseff said.
CEOs of Twitter and Facebook, Jack Dorsey and Mark Zuckerburg, added their input of the situation, both open to the idea of revising Section 230.
Dorsey and Zuckerberg say their platforms strike a balance between promoting free expression and removing harmful content. They have acknowledged making some enforcement errors but say their policies are applied fairly to everyone.
“Without Section 230, platforms could potentially be held liable for everything people say,” Zuckerburg stated in his testimony prepared for a Senate hearing “And could face liability for doing even basic moderation, such as removing hate speech and harassment that impacts the safety and security of their communities.”
Trump has voiced his problem with Section 230 and even felt the need to repeal it himself through the National Defense Authorization Act. In the final weeks of his reelection campaign, Trump’s attacks on Section 230 intensified as social media companies labeled or removed posts they deemed false or misleading or that could cause harm or incite violence.
Hunter Biden, son of President Biden, had a situation himself with Section 230 and social media. When Facebook and Twitter limited the spread of a New York Post article that cited unverified emails reportedly uncovered by allies of Trump about H. Biden, charges of anti-conservative bias raged before the presidential election.
Facebook took down the story after fact-checking it, while Twitter originally blocked links to the story as having violations to its policy but ended up undoing it.