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26/01/2011

Comments

Nigel Warburton

Brian Leiter kindly sent these comments:

A few comments on your short piece:

1. There is no reason why anyone should be tolerant of speech that is morally valueless.

2. There is an existing tort for knowing dissemination of otherwise tortious material, that it would be burdensome for Google to abide by an extension of the law to it is neither here nor there.

3. Google, YouTube and other Internet service providers already have legal obligations to remove material that violates copyright—but not material that is defamatory! It’s utterly bizarre: Americna law (and not only American) gives more protection to copyright than the dignity of persons.

4. My ‘solution’ to the Cyber-Cesspool problem actually has two parts, of which you mention only one: the other part is the repeal of Section 230, which insulates those who own blogs and websites from ordinary tort liability for hosting tortious amterial. (Again, there is an odd asymmetry: they aren’t insulated from copyright violation, just from hosting defamation!)

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