Stunning Ignorance Ann BartowJuly 7, 2009Law & Technology, Online Norms and CultureSlate Pundit and law school graduate Mickey Kaus has just discovered Section 230 but he doesn’t think it “will hold up.” 4 thoughts on “Stunning Ignorance” Seth Finkelstein July 8, 2009 at 10:29 pm Be fair – the counter-intuitive aspects of Section 230 tend to surprise people, and are not common knowledge outside of specialists. And he said: “But I find it difficult to believe that the broad web-site-protecting reading of Section 230 will hold up–it’s a mere statute, remember. Congress can amend it. Is Congress really going to let average citizens get libeled by blogs on the New York Times web site without being able to sue the New York Times?” That strikes me as reasonable, and no different from what many other people have said. Ann Bartow July 10, 2009 at 2:14 pm Seth, Section 230 took effect 13 years ago, and Kaus is a long time journalist/pundit with a JD at an online publication. He should have been aware of it years ago, and could have been just by reading Slate, his employing publication, see e.g. http://www.slate.com/id/2199761/ or http://www.slate.com/id/2175579/ Seth Finkelstein July 10, 2009 at 3:30 pm In my travels in punditry, I am continually reminded of the weakness of “should have”. When it first passed into law, the practical effects were much less significant, and much more intuitive, than was eventually made of it. The problem with Section 230’s evolution is one of not knowing what you don’t know. Unless one follows this relatively specialized field, I can’t see the basis for calling it “stunning” ignorance. Ann Bartow July 10, 2009 at 6:14 pm Fine, whatever. Comments are closed. previousIrony (Updated)nextHow much of this do you think is copyrightable?