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Social Media Harms And The Common Law, Leslie Y. Garfield Tenzer Oct 2022

Social Media Harms And The Common Law, Leslie Y. Garfield Tenzer

Elisabeth Haub School of Law Faculty Publications

This article finds fault with the judiciaries' failure to create a set of common law norms for social media wrongs. In cases concerning social media harms, the Supreme Court and lower courts have consistently adhered to traditional pre-social media principles, failing to use the power of the common law to create a kind of Internet Justice.

Part I of this article reviews social media history and explores how judicial decisions created a fertile bed for social media harm to blossom. Part II illustrates social media harms across several doctrinal disciplines and highlights judicial reluctance to embrace the realities of social …


A 180 On Section 230: State Efforts To Erode Social Media Immunity, Leslie Y. Garfield Tenzer, Hayley Margulis Jan 2022

A 180 On Section 230: State Efforts To Erode Social Media Immunity, Leslie Y. Garfield Tenzer, Hayley Margulis

Elisabeth Haub School of Law Faculty Publications

The turmoil of the 2020 presidential election renewed controversy surrounding 47 U.S.C § 230. The law, adopted as part of the 1996 Communications Decency Act (CDA), shields Interactive Computer Services (ICS) from civil liability for third-party material posted on their Platforms--no matter how heinous and regardless of whether the material enjoys constitutional protection. Consequently, any ICS, which is broadly defined to include Internet service providers (ISPs) and social media platforms (Platforms), can police its own postings but remains free from government intervention or retribution.

In 2022, members of the Texas and Florida legislatures passed laws aiming to limit the scope …


Social Media, Venue And The Right To A Fair Trial, Leslie Y. Garfield Tenzer Jun 2019

Social Media, Venue And The Right To A Fair Trial, Leslie Y. Garfield Tenzer

Elisabeth Haub School of Law Faculty Publications

Judicial failure to recognize social media's influence on juror decision making has identifiable constitutional implications. The Sixth Amendment right to a fair trial demands that courts grant a defendant's change of venue motion when media-generated pretrial publicity invades the unbiased sensibility of those who are asked to sit in judgment. Courts limit publicity suitable for granting a defendant's motion to information culled from newspapers, radio, and television reports. Since about 2014, however, a handful of defendants have introduced social media posts to support their claims of unconstitutional bias in the community. Despite defendants' introduction of negative social media in support …