47 USC SEC. 230.
PROTECTION FOR PRIVATE BLOCKING AND SCREENING OF OFFENSIVE MATERIAL.
(a) FINDINGS- The Congress finds the following:
(1) The rapidly developing array of Internet and other
interactive computer services available to individual Americans
represent an extraordinary advance in the availability of
educational and informational resources to our citizens.
(2) These services offer users a great degree of control
over the information that they receive, as well as the
potential for even greater control in the future as technology
(3) The Internet and other interactive computer services
offer a forum for a true diversity of political discourse,
unique opportunities for cultural development, and myriad
avenues for intellectual activity.
(4) The Internet and other interactive computer services
have flourished, to the benefit of all Americans, with a
minimum of government regulation.
(5) Increasingly Americans are relying on interactive media
for a variety of political, educational, cultural, and
(b) POLICY- It is the policy of the United States--
(1) to promote the continued development of the Internet and
other interactive computer services and other interactive media;
(2) to preserve the vibrant and competitive free market that
presently exists for the Internet and other interactive
computer services, unfettered by Federal or State regulation;
(3) to encourage the development of technologies which
maximize user control over what information is received by
individuals, families, and schools who use the Internet and
other interactive computer services;
(4) to remove disincentives for the development and
utilization of blocking and filtering technologies that empower
parents to restrict their children's access to objectionable or
inappropriate online material; and
(5) to ensure vigorous enforcement of Federal criminal laws
to deter and punish trafficking in obscenity, stalking, and
harassment by means of computer.
(c) PROTECTION FOR `GOOD SAMARITAN' BLOCKING AND SCREENING OF OFFENSIVE MATERIAL-
(1) TREATMENT OF PUBLISHER OR SPEAKER- No provider or user
of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the
publisher or speaker of any information provided by another
information content provider.
(2) CIVIL LIABILITY- No provider or user of an interactive
computer service shall be held liable on account of--
(A) any action voluntarily taken in good faith to
restrict access to or availability of material that the
provider or user considers to be obscene, lewd, lascivious,
filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise
objectionable, whether or not such material is
constitutionally protected; or
(B) any action taken to enable or make available to
information content providers or others the technical means
to restrict access to material described in paragraph (1).
(d) EFFECT ON OTHER LAWS-
(1) NO EFFECT ON CRIMINAL LAW- Nothing in this section shall
be construed to impair the enforcement of section 223 of this
Act, chapter 71 (relating to obscenity) or 110 (relating to
sexual exploitation of children) of title 18, United States
Code, or any other Federal criminal statute.
(2) NO EFFECT ON INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW- Nothing in this
section shall be construed to limit or expand any law
pertaining to intellectual property.
(3) STATE LAW- Nothing in this section shall be construed to
prevent any State from enforcing any State law that is
consistent with this section. No cause of action may be brought
and no liability may be imposed under any State or local law
that is inconsistent with this section.
(4) NO EFFECT ON COMMUNICATIONS PRIVACY LAW- Nothing in this
section shall be construed to limit the application of the
Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986 or any of the
amendments made by such Act, or any similar State law.
(e) DEFINITIONS- As used in this section:
(1) INTERNET- The term `Internet' means the international
computer network of both Federal and non-Federal interoperable
packet switched data networks.
(2) INTERACTIVE COMPUTER SERVICE- The term `interactive
computer service' means any information service, system, or
access software provider that provides or enables computer
access by multiple users to a computer server, including
specifically a service or system that provides access to the
Internet and such systems operated or services offered by
libraries or educational institutions.
(3) INFORMATION CONTENT PROVIDER- The term `information
content provider' means any person or entity that is
responsible, in whole or in part, for the creation or
development of information provided through the Internet or any
other interactive computer service.
(4) ACCESS SOFTWARE PROVIDER- The term `access software
provider' means a provider of software (including client or
server software), or enabling tools that do any one or more of
(A) filter, screen, allow, or disallow content;
(B) pick, choose, analyze, or digest content; or
(C) transmit, receive, display, forward, cache, search,
subset, organize, reorganize, or translate content.'.