ISPs may face blocking challenges
Eric Goldman wrote an article about a Comcast subscriber suing a number of companies (including Comcast and Microsoft and TRUSTe) for blocking mail. As part of the judge’s decision he rules that the ISPs that blocked the plaintiff’s email are not protected under 47 USC 230(c)(2).
the court reaches a decidedly defendant-unfriendly conclusion by rejecting Comcast’s, Cisco’s and Microsoft’s 230(c)(2) defense, the statutory immunity for online filtering decisions–and the often overlooked cousin of 230(c)(1) which I have blogged about many times. Worse, the court reaches its conclusion in the face of several clearly applicable precedent cases. In my opinion, this is an example of how Smith’s pro se status causes the court to be overly cautious…to the point of reaching the wrong result.
Mr. Goldman goes on to discuss how this ruling conflicts with multiple instances of case law.
I don’t expect this will necessarily lead to a spate of suits against Internet providers for blocking, but there is a definite conflict in current case law surrounding spam filtering and if it’s protected under 47 USC 230(c)