Judge Carter Enjoins New York's New Online Hate Speech Law On First Amendment Grounds - Trials & Appeals & Compensation - United States

Gunnar Larson g at xny.io
Thu Feb 23 14:53:17 PST 2023

. . . The potential chilling effect to social media users is exacerbated by
the indefiniteness of some of the Hateful Conduct Law's key terms. It is
not clear what the terms like "vilify" and "humiliate" mean for the
purposes of the law. While it is true that there are readily accessible
dictionary definitions of those words, the law does not define what type of
"conduct" or "speech" could be encapsulated by them. For example, could a
post using the hashtag "BlackLivesMatter" or "BlueLivesMatter" be
considered "hateful conduct" under the law? Likewise, could social media
posts expressing anti-American views be considered conduct that humiliates
or vilifies a group based on national origin? It is not clear from the face
of the text, and thus the law does not put social media users on notice of
what kinds of speech or content is now the target of government regulation.

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