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Facebook can be held liable for Sex trafficking, rules Supreme Court, Texas

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Source: Oberhauser Law

Facebook Inc. owns two of the world’s most popular social media platforms, Facebook and Instagram. Both of these platforms are widely used by people of all ages from across the globe and the right to speech gives each individual a right to post anything and voice out their opinions on the social media platforms except for what is specifically against the company’s policies and community guidelines.

Having said that, should Facebook be responsible for anyone misusing the platform for illegal actions?

Well, in a recent case of Sex Trafficking, the Supreme Court of Texas has ruled out that Facebook Inc., as a social media conglomerate can be held liable for sex trafficking being carried out on its social media platforms, according to a report by HuffPost. Sources suggest that several victims have moved to the court, accusing the social media company of enjoying benefits from its online facilitation, knowing about the illegal acts being carried on its platforms.

The Supreme Court of Texas has recently allowed three sex trafficking civil lawsuits to proceed against the social media giant after the court determined that the current laws of the land do not permit any company, including Facebook or any other website or app to act as a “lawless no man’s land”, as mentioned in a report by HuffPost and first reported by Houston Chronicle.

Sex trafficking is a major crime that has to be kept in check and multinational behemoths like Facebook should be more careful and responsible for the crimes happening on its platforms. Facebook Inc. cannot in any which way, provide criminals like sex traffickers an open ground to play their dirty game. The majority of voters are against the social media conglomerate in this case because it is bound to take responsibility for not controlling criminal activity on its platforms. Reports suggest that the victims of the case have accused Facebook of violating the anti-trafficking law that was passed back in 2009 but Facebook opposes these allegations with section 230 of the federal Communications Decency Act that was passed in 1996, protecting online service providers from liability for the content published by its users.

According to what HuffPost reports, the Texas Supreme Court tossed out Facebook’s blanket defense on 25th June 2021 and held Facebook liable for facilitating such illicit behavior on its platforms. Sex Trafficking is a major crime and industry giants should be responsible for making sure that it does not provide an open ground for Sex Traffickers to play their crime.

Thus, the Supreme Court of Texas ruled that Facebook can be held liable for Sex Trafficking on its platforms.

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