X sues California over content moderation law

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X, the social media company formerly known as Twitter, has filed a lawsuit against the state of California over a law that requires companies to disclose details about their content moderation practices.

The law, known as AB 587, requires social media companies to publish information about their handling of hate speech, extremism, misinformation and other issues, as well as details about internal moderation processes.

X argues that the law is unconstitutional and will lead to censorship. The company claims that the law “has both the purpose and likely effect of pressuring companies such as X Corp. to remove, demonetize, or deprioritize constitutionally-protected speech.”

X is not alone in its opposition to the law. Though the measure was backed by some activists, a number of industry groups took issue with AB 587. Netchoice, a trade group which represents Meta, Google, TikTok and other tech companies, argued last year that AB 587 would help bad actors evade companies’ security measures, and make it harder for them to enforce their rules.

AB 587’s backers have said it’s necessary to increase the transparency of major platforms. “If @X has nothing to hide, then they should have no objection to this bill,” Assemblyman Jesse Gabriel, who wrote AB 587, said in response to X’s lawsuit.

The lawsuit is still pending in federal court.

The sources for this piece include an article in Engadget.

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