Natalie explores Washington’s SB 6251, Section 230 of the CDA, and the issue of free speech

By Royze Adolfo 

Fellow Berktern Natalie Nicol published her first post on the Citizen Media Law Project blog regarding the enactment of Washington State’s SB 6251, a law that could require online service providers to monitor third-party content if it survives a federal challenge to its constitutionality.

Natalie explains that SB 6251 is concerning because it might shift the burden of policing content to internet intermediaries – as opposed to law enforcement authorities – thereby posing a threat to free speech online. She contextualizes her analysis with a discussion of section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which grants online service providers broad immunity from liability for hosting third-party content.

In researching the piece, she relied on blogs such as TechDirt, the CMLP’s Legal Guide on Section 230, and other resources widely available to the public. She also discussed the post with Berkman Center colleagues, whose views helped broaden her own perspective on the challenging subject matter discussed therein.

Read Natalie’s blog post here.

Natalie is a graduate of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, where her interest in First Amendment and media law issues were first sparked. As a student at UC Hastings College of the Law, she has further explored these subjects and more through internships at First Amendment Project and the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

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