I write to you to condemn the counterproductive, anti-LGBT, anti-privacy EARN IT Act in the strongest possible terms. Despite purporting to protect children from sexual exploitation, the EARN IT Act in fact will make online platforms less able to report and remove child pornography. Making platforms liable for content hosted on them actually makes companies less willing to do anything that involves trying to seek out, take down, and report CSAM, because of the greatly increased liability that comes with admitting that there is CSAM on the platform to search for and deal with. In the meantime, it will destroy Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, the part that the ACLU regards as “foundational to modern online communications.” In destroying end-to-end encryption, EARN IT will also destroy the Internet as we know it, and continue chipping away at the right to privacy. It will also encourage platforms and far-right interest groups to label anything having to do with sexual health and sexual expression as dangerous pornography, ushering in an era of censorship and repression under the name of keeping children safe, all the while actually making the Internet less able to cope with the very real problem of CSEM. The EARN IT Act has been roundly condemned by nearly every major LGBTQ+ advocacy and human rights organization in the country, and for good reason. It is based on fundamental misunderstandings of the law and reality. The EARN IT Act must not be allowed to pass.
▶ First sent on February 3, 2022 by Beatrice