20 August 2019

Seattle Area Scientist Reviews KingCast v. Facebook and Concurs with Plaintiff and Facebook Amicus Counsel, IBM Chief of Policy and Others on CDA 47 USC §230 Immunity.

Look closely folks: Facebook capitulated.

First of all before we get to the letter written to the Court of this man's own initiative, this is the first draft of the thumbnail for my forthcoming app that I'll be discussing before my colleague Tony Doupé and his film class tomorrow, as I am wont to do over the years. Here's a series of Facebook discussions. Eventually I will teach film and media but for now all you need to know is that the app will help thousands of people effectively gain camera access to Courts that is all too-often wrongfully denied.

Actual Transcript reduced to audio.

Reaction from Courtroom observer + my commentary.

IBM post with Federalist Society's Ryan Hageman.

As submitted via email today to the Federal District Court and to my opposing Counsel from someone who has been following this case. Note that when you read the Transcript from Oral Argument in KingCast v. Facebook, 19-CV-1987 and other documents filed at this link you will see that Facebook’s own Amicus Counsel says the same exact thing, and so too does the Director of Policy at IBM. That’s all I have to say at this point.


Dear Court and Counsel:

I am a Seattle-based scientist working on noninvasive molecular diagnostics for cancer.  I have been following the 2019 case of King v. Facebook -- number 1987 -- and am writing to express my opinion, as it seems very timely and important.As I understand it, unlike a majority of companies in America, Facebook is currently empowered to violate its own contracts and terms of service with its users at its sole discretion, while enjoying significant immunity from law suits intended to seek redress.  In 2019, Facebook is one of the largest and most powerful companies ever to exist, and its capacity to wield influence is enormous.  Allowing it to continue to receive the special protections that were granted in the 1990's by the Communications Decency Act (CDA) when the internet was a fledgling industry, in the face of arguments like that of Mr. King, seems to be an indefensible position.  That Mr. King's postings on the Facebook platform have been selectively removed only when titled "How to Sue Facebook," however tasteful or not, resembles retaliation, seems like censorship of his First Amendment rights, and is not supported by Facebook's own terms of service.:

NOTE: Facebook as recently rescinded the ban:  Check the thumbnail carefully:

It sets a bad precedent to leave Facebook's broad immunity under the CDA the in-tact, and I urge you to consider revoking it.

Dear Dr.. XXXX, as a layperson, you get it. Thank you for reading my blog!  I can't continue on the thread as it is not a legal document but I thank you for your support and make one small distinction:

There is technically no First Amendment violation. There are cases where public officials violate First Amendment Rights by snubbing people but that's not exactly the case before us and Facebook remains technically a private company regardless of its nature as the World's largest public utility.

I will be happy to take this up with you in further detail offline and again, thank you for following.


Christopher King, J.D.

Thank you for the distinction.  Nevertheless, I hope that the platform will be made as egalitarian as possible.

Best regards,

Meanwhile the August 2019 installment of the Civil Rights Audit doesn't say jack shit about dark people specifically being slammed for Hate Speech but does mention conservatives.  

Content Policies: Although Facebook values free expression, it also wants to ensure that users feel welcome and safe on the platform. To that end, Facebook has established “Community Standards” governing which types of content are prohibited from the platform. Conservative interviewees identified concerns in the following areas: 

1. Hate Speech Designations: On this front, interviewees’ concerns stemmed both from the notion of having a “hate speech” policy in the first place and from unfair labeling of certain speech as “hate speech.” Interviewees often pointed out the highly subjective nature of determining what constitutes “hate”—an assessment that may be subject to the biases of content reviewers. The term “hate speech” is itself controversial, insofar as it may incorrectly ascribe motive in many cases.

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