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Hastings Communications and Entertainment Law Journal

Authors

Tawanna D. Lee

Abstract

Fake news is an intractable concern around the globe, sowing division and distrust in institutions, and undermining election integrity. This Article analyzes the spectrum of private and public regulation of “fake news” from comparative law and normative perspectives. In the United States, combating fake news shares surprising bipartisan support in an ever-divided political landscape. While several proposals have emerged that would strip Internet media companies of the liability shield for third-party content, it is unlikely that they would survive the seemingly insurmountable First Amendment scrutiny. This Article argues for a different tact—an amendment to the Communications Decency Act that addresses platform design choices rather than speech. In doing so, the Article addresses constitutional concerns of online expression and censorship and demonstrates that a “reasonable standard” is consistent with the existing Internet regulatory framework.

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