Section 230: The little law that defined how the Internet works

"Section 230 “gave companies the go-ahead to launch every single technical intermediary that you depend on for Internet communication,” said Daphne Keller, the platform regulation director at Stanford Cyber Policy Center. With few exceptions, it gives companies the right to police content on their websites as they see fit. That means companies don’t have to sift through millions of posts to make sure they are not violating any laws before allowing them to appear online. It also means people can post pretty much whatever they want and companies can duck responsibility for the effects.

But it was not designed to keep online forums neutral, Keller said. In fact, she said, it was meant to encourage companies to keep an eye on the conversations on their sites.

Section 230 “was very specifically crafted to get platforms to moderate content,” she said."