Put simply, without Section 230, Twitter would not exist. It could not exist.
Which leads us to our next question: “Would it be such a bad thing if Twitter and Facebook were to disappear?*
Like Aaron Altman in Broadcast News, delivering his speech about Tom being the devil, I’m semi-serious here.*
You may have noticed that 2020 was kind of a bad year. Not only was there a worldwide pandemic that so far has cost us over two million lives across the globe, but at the same time, people seem to have gone crazy in large numbers. First we had (in addition to many peaceful protests) many violent riots over the death of George Floyd during the summer — riots which in some places have not yet calmed down. Again: while most of the protesting was indeed peaceful, a notable subset of “protests” were what Big Media likes to call “mostly peaceful” — in other words, what normal people call incredibly violent. A police station was burned to the ground in Minneapolis. So-called “autonomous zones” of anarchy were carved out in cities like Portland, with the tacit approval of city leadership, and people were murdered inside them. And then, as if to assure us that 2021 will be no better, we had the aforementioned spectacle of an utterly insane horde of thousands of maniacs at the Capitol less than two weeks ago. When is the last time we saw so much mental illness on open display in one twelve-month span of time?
I’m sure this is not a tremendously original thought, but my own personal theory is that social media lies at the heart of this insanity.