Man at His Best

Facebook Faces US$1 Billion Lawsuit For Providing 'Material Support' To Hamas

Families of five victims in Palestinian attacks say Facebook should be held liable, despite legal protections for online publishers

BY Jason S Ganesan | Jul 13, 2016 | Technology

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Facebook is being sued for an insane US$1 billion by the families of five Americans involved in Hamas attacks in Israel, of which four died and one got injured. Why? Because Facebook, they say, knowingly provided “material support and resources” to Hamas.

Not in the sense of funding it but the families claim that Facebook should be held liable for the attacks against the five people by Hamas because… Hamas used Facebook.

Specifically, the suit says that Hamas operatives shared tactical information with one another on Facebook, which includes intel on Israeli military actions. And that that’s somehow Facebook’s fault.

The lawsuit, which was filed in the US, will likely not have any legs, because it runs contrary to freedoms guaranteed by Section 230 of the controversial Communications Decency Act. Although the act was initially designed to restrict freedom of speech online, Section 230 is one of the good bits.

The section says that "No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider,” meaning that platform providers cannot be held responsible for what users of that platform express, however heinous the expression—beyond objectionable content that said provider decides/is pressured to take down, of course.

If they could, smarmy ‘inspirational’ Minions would have broken Facebook a long time ago


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