‘Worst of Both Worlds’ FOSTA Signed Into Law, Completing Section 230’s Evisceration

This morning, President Trump signed H.R. 1865, the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017 (FOSTA), into law. The bill signing was anticipated, but that doesn’t make the outcome any less terrible. Today, Washington DC regulators made a major error, one that we’ll likely regret for decades. Eventually, I plan to write an explainer about the law. In this post, I’ll highlight three developments from the past 2+ weeks since the Senate approved the bill, plus some open questions. Development #1: On Friday, the US government shut down Backpage. The government seized the Backpage.com domain name, took the website completely offline globally, executed search warrants across multiple locations, and indicted 7 people affiliated with Backpage. Regardless of what happens in the ensuing legal proceedings, make no mistake: Backpage.com is permanently gone. This development has left me scratching my head on at least two fronts. First, the…

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