The Big Story: Congress Debates Bill to Change Section 230. The Senate Commerce Committee held a hearing this week on the Stop Enabling Sex Trafficking Act (S.1693) a well-intentioned but overly broad bill that could be harmful to Internet platforms.
The Senate Commerce Committee held a hearing on a new bill aimed at making it easier to penalize websites and online services that facilitate sex-trafficking.
While much of the hearing focused on the bipartisan and unanimous agreement that sex-trafficking is a tragedy that needs to be addressed, some lawmakers and witnesses noted the potential unintended consequences of the Stop Enabling Sex Trafficking Act (S.1693) as currently drafted.
As the Senate begins to consider the Stop Enabling Sex Trafficking Act of 2017 "SESTA," we have have tried to debunk some of the myths the bill's sponsors are saying about the legislation. Learn more about what you can do to protect Section 230 here.
The Big Story: Senate CDA 230 Fight. We’ve spent much of the last few weeks warning about the unintended and potentially dangerous consequences of a well-intentioned bill called the Stop Enabling Sex Trafficking Act (S. 1693). The bill will be the focus of a Senate Commerce Committee hearing next week.
The Big Story: Trump Rescinds DACA. President Donald Trump’s administration announced this week that it will phase out Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an Obama-era policy that let 800,000 law-abiding undocumented immigrants stay and work in the U.S. without fear of deportation for renewable two-year periods. The administration’s decision gives Congress six months to pass immigration legislation before DACA protections are phased out.
Engine looks forward to working with President Trump’s for nominee Andrei Iancu for the position of the Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). As a non-profit advocacy and research organization that supports startups, we understand what an important position the Director of the USPTO is to protecting the innovation ecosystem.
Last Day to Vote for SXSW Tech Policy Panels. Voting on SXSW panels ends today, so it’s your last chance to vote for tech policy panels at next year’s SXSW. Get caught up on the offerings with our guide, which includes panels on everything from patent trolls, to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, to artificial intelligence.
Trade Talks Should Keep Startups in Mind. Representatives from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico met in D.C. this week to kick off talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. You may think of things like auto manufacturing and government contracts when you hear NAFTA, but it has major implications for U.S. startups that do business abroad or plan to do business abroad.
Tech Community Comes to Section 230’s Defense. Thousands of Internet companies rely on Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which protects platforms from being held legally responsible for what their users say online. That’s why we and more than 30 companies, groups, and organizations—including Copia, Automattic, Cloudflare, GitHub, Medium, Patreon, and Reddit—wrote to two lawmakers looking to narrow Section 230’s protections in the name of curbing sex trafficking. In a letter this week, we reiterated the tech community’s demonstrated commitment to the laudable fight against sex trafficking but explained that the new bill from Sens. Rob Portman and Richard Blumenthal would have unintended devastating consequences for the Internet.
Startups Oppose Senate Bill Creating Exceptions to Bedrock Internet Law. A bipartisan group of Senators introduced legislation this week that would undermine Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA), the fundamental intermediary liability law that protects Internet companies from being held legally responsible for what their users say on their platform. The Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act has the admirable goal of cracking down on sex trafficking online, however, injecting an exception like this in to CDA 230 would create a huge litigation risk for early stage companies that could drastically diminish investment in the sector. While we continue to work with legislators and victims groups to curb the horrific practice of sex trafficking, Engine has opposed this legislation. If you are a startup, sign onto our letter and tell Congress not to undermine the protections that created the Internet. Also, check out our op-ed with the Charles Koch Institute on the importance of CDA 230 to the success and growth of the Internet.