Altra conferma (d’appello) che Twitter non è “State actor”, per cui nei suoi confronti non opera la protezione costituzionale del diritto di parola

Altra conferma che le piattaforme digitali non sono State actors ai fini della protezione da Primo  Emendamento: così Appello del 9 circuito, Rutenberg. c. Twitter e Dorsey , 18 05.2022, D.C. No. 4:21-cv-00548-YGR.

Motivazione breve , che conferma il primo grado:

<< The district court properly dismissed Rutenberg’s First Amendment claim: She did not allege sufficient facts to infer that the defendants (collectively, “Twitter” or “the company”) engaged in state action when the company moderated or suspended the former President’s Twitter account. The First Amendment’s Free Speech Clause “prohibits the government—not a private party—from abridging speech.” Prager Univ. v. Google LLC, 951 F.3d 991, 996 (9th Cir. 2020) (citations omitted). Dismissal was proper because the complaint lacked “a cognizable legal theory” or “sufficient well-pleaded, nonconclusory factual allegation[s]” to state a  plausible claim for relief. Beckington v. Am. Airlines, Inc., 926 F.3d 595, 604 (9th Cir. 2019) (internal quotation marks and citations omitted).

Rutenberg offers insufficient facts to infer the “close nexus” between Twitter’s conduct on the one hand and the government on the other, which is required to find that Twitter’s conduct constituted state action. Brentwood Acad. v. Tenn. Secondary Sch. Athletic Ass’n, 531 U.S. 288, 295 (2001). To the contrary, Rutenberg acknowledges that Twitter exercised its own “discretion and authority” in moderating President Trump’s account, and that Twitter acted as President Trump’s “opponent” in doing so. Twitter was not a “willful participant” in any “joint activity” with the President, and its conduct was not state action. Lugar v.
Edmondson Oil Co., Inc.
, 457 U.S. 922, 941 (1982) (quoting United States v. Price, 383 U.S. 787, 794 (1966)). Rutenberg’s contention that Twitter “abused” a delegation of authority when it moderated President Trump’s account is of no moment. This “abuse of authority” doctrine “does not apply” where, as here, “the
challenged action is undertaken by a private party rather than a state official.”
Collins v. Womancare, 878 F.2d 1145, 1152 (9th Cir. 1989) (emphasis omitted) (citing Lugar, 457 U.S. at 940). Indeed, it would be “ironic” to conclude that Twitter’s imposition of sanctions against a public official—sanctions the official “steadfastly opposed”—is state action. Nat’l Collegiate Athletic Ass’n v. Tarkanian, 488 U.S. 179, 199 (1988). >>

E del resto non ci fu alcuna delega dal presidente Trump a Tw. (chissà cosa aveva allegato l’attrice!!): << Similarly, President Trump did not delegate a “public function” to Twitter within the meaning of Supreme Court and circuit precedent. Halleck, 139 S. Ct. at 1929. The relevant function here—moderating speech on the Twitter platform—is not “an activity that only governmental entities have traditionally performed.” Id. at 1930; see also id. (“[M]erely hosting speech by others is not a traditional, exclusive public function . . . .”); Prager Univ., 951 F.3d at 998 (moderation of content on video-streaming platform was not a “public function”) >>

Si noti che l’attrice si doleva della rimozione ingiustificata dell’account Tw. non proprio ma del presidente Trump.

(notizia  e link alla sentenza dal blog del prof. Eric Goldman)

Altro rigetto di domanda per presunta violazione del Primo Emendamento a seguito di blocco di account Facebook e Twitter

Implacabile la giurisprudenza USA nel continuare ad affermare che la protezione costituzionale del diritto di parola è concessa solo verso lo Stato o organi pubblici,  non verso privati (quali sono i pur giganteschi social media).

Ora è la volta del Distretto Nord della California a firma del giudice Breyer con provv. 5 maggio 2022, Case 3:22-cv-00737-CRB , Hart. c. Facebook e altri , a seguito di blocco dell’account per ripetuta disinformazione soprattutto in tema di covid-19.

Misinformazione che violava i terms of service (Facebook:  forbade users from sharing “anything . . . [t]hat is unlawful, misleading, discriminatory, or fraudulent.”; Twitter: prohibits using “Twitter’s services to share false or misleading information about COVID-19 which may lead to harm.”).

In particolare sono rigettate le due modalità prospettate dall’attore, evidentemente per superare il dettato costituzionale e la sua interpretazione corrente. Infatti non ricorre nè la cd joint action (tra privato e potere pubblico; v. nota 4 << It is still more difficult to understand how general legislative debates, such as those surrounding Section 230, could provide a President with coercive power over a private company sufficient to confer state action>>) nè la government coercicion, pp. 9-15.

Allo scopo, l’attore aveva citato pure il presidente Biden e il responsabile sanitario Murphy in proprio.  In particolare aveva allegato che <<Biden and Murthy “directed” social media platforms to make four changes: (1) to “measure and publicly share the impact of misinformation on their platform”; (2) to “create a robust enforcement strategy that bridges their properties and provides transparency about the rules”; (3) to “take faster action against harmful posts” because “information travels quite quickly on social media platforms”; and (4) to “promote quality information in their feed algorithm.” Id. ¶¶ 14-17. Hart also alleges that Biden directed Murthy to create a 22-page advisory with “instructions on how social media companies should remove posts with which Murthy and Biden disagree.” Id. ¶ 18.  Finally, Hart alleges that Biden “threatened” social media companies who do not comply by “publicly shaming and humiliating them, stating, ‘They’re killing people”)>>.

Da noi per fortuna l’art. 2 Cost. si applica pacificamente pure verso i soggetti privati.

(notizia e link alla sentenza dal blog del prof. Eric Goldman)

Il blocco dell’account Twitter per post ingannevoli o fuorvianti (misleading) è coperto dal safe harbour ex § 230 CDA

Il distretto nord della California con provv. 29.04.2022, No. C 21-09818 WHA, Berenson v. Twitter, decide la domanda giudiziale allegante un illegittimo blocco dell’account per post fuorvianti (misleading) dopo la nuova Twitter policy five-strike in tema di covid 19.

E la rigetta, riconoscendo il safe harbour ex § 230.c.2.a del CDA.

A nulla valgono le allegazioni attoree intorno alla mancanza di buona fede in Twitter: << With the exception of the claims for breach of contract and promissory estoppel, all claims in this action are barred by 47 U.S.C. Section 230(c)(2)(A), which provides, “No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be held liable on account of — 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.” For an internet platform like Twitter, Section 230 precludes liability for removing content and preventing content from being posted that the platform finds would cause its users harm, such as misinformation regarding COVID-19. Plaintiff’s allegations regarding the leadup to his account suspension do not provide a sufficient factual underpinning for his conclusion Twitter lacked good faith. Twitter constructed a robust five-strike COVID-19 misinformation policy and, even if it applied those strikes in error, that alone would not show bad faith. Rather, the allegations are consistent with Twitter’s good faith effort to respond to clearly objectionable content posted by users on its platform. See Barnes v. Yahoo!, Inc., 570 F.3d 1096, 1105 (9th Cir. 2009); Domen v. Vimeo, Inc., 433 F. Supp. 3d 592, 604 (S.D.N.Y. 2020) (Judge Stewart D. Aaron)>>.

Invece non  rientrano nella citata esimente (quindi la causa prosegue su quelle) le domande basate su violazione contrattuale e promissory estoppel.

La domanda basata sulla vioalzione del diritto di parola è pure respinta per il solito motivo della mancanza di state action, essendo Tw. un  ente privato: <<Aside from Section 230, plaintiff fails to even state a First Amendment claim. The free speech clause only prohibits government abridgement of speech — plaintiff concedes Twitter is a private company (Compl. ¶15). Manhattan Cmty. Access Corp. v. Halleck, 139 S. Ct. 1921, 1928 (2019). Twitter’s actions here, moreover, do not constitute state action under the joint action test because the combination of (1) the shift in Twitter’s enforcement position, and (2) general cajoling from various federal officials regarding misinformation on social media platforms do not plausibly assert Twitter conspired or was otherwise a willful participant in government action. See Heineke v. Santa Clara Univ., 965 F.3d 1009, 1014 (9th Cir. 2020).  For the same reasons, plaintiff has not alleged state action under the governmental nexus test either, which is generally subsumed by the joint action test. Naoko Ohno v. Yuko Yasuma, 723 F.3d 984, 995 n.13 (9th Cir. 2013). Twitter “may be a paradigmatic public square on the Internet, but it is not transformed into a state actor solely by providing a forum for speech.” Prager Univ. v. Google LLC, 951 F.3d 991, 997 (9th Cir. 2020) (cleaned up, quotation omitted). >>

(notizia e link alla sentenza dal blog del prof. Eric goldman)

Riprodurre giornalisticamente uno screenshot di articolo di giornale e di fotografia ivi presente può essere lecito per fair use?

Dice di si la corte di appello del 2 circuito 29.03.2022, Yang c. Mic Network, 20-4097-cv(L), confermando il primo grado: ricorrono infatti i requisiti previsti dal 17 U.S. Code § 107.

Fatto: < Stephen Yang sues Mic Network Inc. (“Mic”) for copyright infringement under 17 U.S.C. § 501. The copyright at issue protects a photograph of Dan Rochkind taken by Yang and licensed to the New York Post for its article Why I Won’t Date Hot Women Anymore. Yang alleges that Mic, without obtaining a license, used a digital screenshot of the Post article—including its headline and a
portion of the photograph of Rochkind—as the banner image of its article Twitter Is Skewering the ‘New York Post’ for a Piece on Why a Man ‘Won’t Date Hot Women’.
>

Il diritto azionato è dunque quello di autore su fotografia.

Da noi tale riproduzine si collocherebbe probabilmente tra il diritto di informazione e la satira

L’articolo dell’editore  Mic dovrebbe essere questo .

(notizia e link alla sentenza dal blog del prof. Eric Goldman, ove pure riproduzione dello screenshot)

Post offensivi/osceni sui social e diritto di parola: protezione ridotta, se non assente

Il Tribunale del Colorado , 31.1.2022, Case 1:20-cv-01977-PAB-KMT, Sgaggio c. De Young e altri, decide sulla domanda presentata da un utente Facebook contro il Dipartimento di Polizia di Woodland Park , che lo aveva bannato dalla pagina Facebook del dipartimenot stesso per post ingiuriosi.

L’azione era basata sul Primo Emednamento (libertà di parola).

Si trattava dunque certo di State Actor.  Però i post erano offensivi o addirittura osceni: e per essi la tutela del Diritto di Parola è ridotta, se non assente.

I post erano: << a) He posted the link to the Woodland Park Video and stated, “You target sick kids to get your overtime pay.. [sic] That’s why you are a pig.”

b). He posted ,“Why did you punk ass pigs remove my post. This is a pubic [sic] forum. I’m going to sue the chief of police, the city of Woodland Park, and whatever punk ass bitch remove my post. Your actions are unconstitutional and violation of federal law 18 usc 241,242.. [sic] see you pigs in Federal court..”

c. He posted the link to the Woodland Park Video and stated, “You target sick children to Enrich [sic] officers [yellow police officer emoji] with overtime pay.. [sic] dirty ass cops.”


d. He stated, “Tyler Pope they violate the constitution daily. All too stupid to understand the oath they took. We the people will bring these terrorists into federal court.” (Ex. D, Pl. Dep. Ex. 12 at 1–2; Ex. E, Pl. Dep. at 106:3–6, 198:13–16.)>>

La corte rigetta appunto affermando la riduzione/assenza di protezione , quando ricorra obscenity, senza che ciò costituisca discriminazione: <<The restrictions on Plaintiff’s speech in this case do not run afoul of the First Amendment. He alleges that his freedom of speech was infringed because of the actions Defendant De Young and someone allegedly at the City took restricting his ability to post on certain Facebook pages after he used indecent and obscene language.

Plaintiff used the words “pig,” “terrorist,” “ass,” and “bitch” to refer to the police, and he baselessly and inaccurately accused the police of targeting sick children for personal profit.

The evidence indicates there were policies in place prohibiting the use of indecent and obscene language and that Plaintiff’s speech violated such policies. There is no genuine dispute of material fact that two other  individuals who also responded on the Police Department’s page with criticism of the warrant’s execution that were articulated with non-obscene language and, thus, not in violation of policy and did not have their posts removed.

Thus, the evidence clearly establishes that the restrictions  occurred solely because of Plaintiff’s indecent and obscenity language, not because Defendant De Young or the City were trying to censor Plaintiff’s posts about the warrant.>>

E poi: <<Plaintiff’s argument that these words are not obscene or indecent (Resp. at 6–7) goes against common sense. “Punk ass bitch” is not a literary turn of phrase. (Id. at 7.) Moreover, it is inaccurate to refer to the police as “terrorists” (id.), when there is no dispute that the execution of the search warrant was lawful. (Undisputed Facts, ¶ 1. ( ……)   Plaintiff’s argument that these words are not obscene or indecent (Resp. at 6–7) goes against common sense. “Punk ass bitch” is not a literary turn of phrase. (Id. at 7.)  Moreover, it is inaccurate to refer to the police as “terrorists” (id.), when there is no dispute that the execution of the search warrant was lawful. (Undisputed Facts, ¶ 1.>>

(notizia e link alla sentenza dal blog del prof. Eric Goldman)

Ancora (male) per la tesi delle piattaforme come State Actors: sul diritto di parola verso un ente privato

Dei soggetti/gruppi no-vax gestiscono account e canali su Facebook e su Youtube.

Secondo le rispettive policy , però, vengono chiusi, per i contenuti disinformativi in tema sanitario

Allora i titolari ricorrono azionando il dirito di parola che oin bnase al 1 emendamento della costituizione usa non è mai inibibile dallo Stato.

Le piattaforme però sono gestite da imprese private, non dallo Stato; e solo contro questo il primo emendamento è azionabile.

L’azione è per vero estesa anche verso soggetti diversi, quando però vi sia dietro sempre lo Stato. Ma non è il caso delle piattaforme.

Il distretto nord della california (31.01.2021, Case 4:20-cv-09456-JST,  Informed Consent Action Network and founder Del Bigtree (collectively “ICAN”) c. Youtue altri) conferma l’orietnamento di gran lunga prevalente secondo cui le piattaforme non costituiscono State Actors (anche se di dubbia esattezza rigettando una possibile interpretazione storco-teleologico-evolutiva della norma costituzionale).

Il concetto di state action è declinabile in quattro modi: <<The Ninth Circuit has “recognize[d] at least four different criteria, or tests, used to identify state action: (1) public function; (2) joint action; (3) government compulsion or coercion; and (4) governmental nexus.” Id. (internal quotation marks and citation omitted). The inquiry to determine whether a private entity is acting through the state is “necessarily factbound.”>>

Nessuno dei due azionati (sub 2 e sub 3) viene però ravvisato dal giudice.

(notizia e link alla sentenza dal blog del prof. Eric Goldman)

La pagina del gruppo Facebook dell’Amministrazione Comunale costituisce “designated public forum” ai fini della libertà di parola

Secondo la corte di Seattle-WA , 21 nov. 2021,Case 2:21-cv-01264-MJP , Kimksey ed altri c. comune di Sammamish, la pagina del  gruppo Facebook, costituito dal Comune di Sammamish per dialogare di temi istituzionali con i cittadini, costituisce <designated public forum> (all’interno della nota tripartizione comnprendente pure <zpublic forum> e <limited public forum>).

Infatti da un lato non c’è censura preventiva e dall’altro i commenti off topic son spesso stati tollerati

Pertanto si applica lo strictg scrutiny nel giudizio sulla legittimità della censura : il quale viene superato solo  <<it furthers a compelling interest and is narrowly tailored to achieve that interest>>

La ragione per cui si trattava di post <fuori tema -off topic-> non è tale: per cui la sua censura è illegittima

(notizia della sentenza e link alla stessa dal blog di Eric Goldman)

Ancora sulla (al momento impossibile da ottenere) qualificazione delle piattaforme social come State Actors ai fini del Primo Emendamento (libertà di parola)

Altra sentenza (d’appello stavolta) che rigetta la domadna vs. Facebook (rectius, Meta) basata sul fatto che illegalmente filtrerebbe/censurerebbe i post o rimuoverebbe gli account , violando il Primo Emendamento (libertà di parola).

Questo diritto spetta solo verso lo Stato o verso chi agisce in suo nome o assieme ad esso.

Si tratta della sentenza di appello del 9° circuito (su impugnazione di una sentenza californiana confermata) ,  emessa il 22.11.2021, No. 20-17489 , D.C. No. 3:20-cv-05546-RS, Atkinson c. Meta-Zuckerberg.

Sono riproposte dall’utente (e la Corte partitamente rigetta) tutte le consuete e note causae petendi in tema.   Nulla di nuovo ma un utile loro ripasso.

Inoltre la Corte conferma pure l’applicazione del safe harbour ex  230 CDA.

(notizia e link alla sentenza dal blog di Eric Goldman)

Quattro causae petendi relative al First Amendment/libertà di parola per contrastare la sospensione dell’account Youtube, ma nessuna accolta

Interessante sentenza californiana sulla solita questione della libertà di parola  (First Amendement)  asseritamente violata da sospensione dell’account su social media (politicamente di destra) da parte di una state action.

Si tratta della corte distrettuale di S. Josè, Californa, 19 ottobre 2021, Case No. 20-cv-07502-BLF, Doe c. Google,.

Sono azionate quattro causae petendi, tutte rigettate visto che nessuna è applicabile alla censura/content moderation di Youtube:

1) Public function: curiosamente l’attore e la corte invocano in senso reciprocamente opposto il  noto precedente Prager Univ. c. Google del 2020.

2) Compulsion: <<Rep. Adam Schiff and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and an October 2020 House Resolution, which “have pressed Big Tech” into censoring political speech with threats of limiting Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (“CDA”) and other penalties.>>. Alquanto inverosimile (è però la più lungamente argometnata)

3) joint action: <<Joint action is present where the government has “so far insinuated itself into a position of interdependence with [a private entity] that it must be recognized as a joint participant in the challenged activity.” Gorenc v. Salt River Project Agr. Imp. and Power Dist., 869 F.2d 503, 507 (9th Cir. 1989) (quoting Burton v. Wilmington Parking Authority, 365 U.S. 715, 725 (1961)). Further, a private defendant must be a “willful participant in joint action with the state or its agents.” Dennis v. Sparks, 449 U.S. 24, 27 (1980). Joint action requires a “substantial degree of cooperative action” between private and public actors. Collins v. Womancare, 878 F.2d 1145, 1154 (9th Cir. 1989).>.

Per gli attori la  joint action theory starebbe in un  <<Twitter exchange between Rep. Schiff and YouTube CEO Susan Wojnicki in which Ms. Wojnicki states, “We appreciate your partnership and will continue to consult with Members of Congress as we address the evolving issues around #COVID19.” FAC, Ex. E at 1; Opp. at 10-15. Plaintiffs argue that this Twitter exchange shows Defendants and the federal government were in an “admitted partnership.”>>. Allegazione un pò leggerina.

4) Governmental nexus: ricorre quando c’è << “such a close nexus between the State and the challenged action that the seemingly private behavior may be fairly treated as that of the State itself.” Kirtley v. Rainey, 326 F.3d 1088, 1094-95 (9th Cir. 2003). “The purpose of this requirement is to assure that constitutional standards are invoked only when it can be said that the State is responsible for the specific conduct of which plaintiff complains.” Blum, 457 U.S. at 1004-1005>>. (sembra assai simile alla prcedente).

Non avendo accolto alcuna di quesrta, non affronta il safe harbour ex 230 CDA, p. 12. Curioso l’rodine logico : il criterio della ragine più liquidqa avrebbe potuto a rigttare (nel merito) con tale norma.

(sentenza e link dal blog di Eric Goldman)

Diritto di parola nei confronti della comunità locale che vuole far togliere dei post da Instagram

Interessante, atipico ed inquietante caso deciso nel Wisconsin il 24.09.2021, ase No. 20-cv-0620-bhl, Cohoon v. Konrath-Klump.

Un ragazza (Amyiah cohon) si ammala di Covid19: nonostante un test negativo, i medici glielo indicano come probabile, essendo agli inizi della pandemia ed essendo probabilmente ancor poco preciso). Posta su instagram in due occasioni successive delle foto, che la rappresentano malata ed anzi con ossigenatori.

La comunità locale si spaventa, non avendo ancora avuto all’epoca alcun  caso, e tramite lo sceriffo chiede che vengano rimosse . Lo sceriffo avanza la richeista in modo deciso, addirittura ventilando la possibilità che operi una sanzione penale detentiva in caso di rifiuto.

La ragazza però agisce in giudizio chiedendo: (1) a declaratory judgment establishing that Defendants violated her First Amendment rights, and (2) an injunction enjoining Defendants from citing her or her parents for disorderly conduct, arresting them, jailing them, or threatening any of the above, for future posts on social media about her scare with COVID-19. (ECF No. 3 at 1.).

La corte accoglie la prima domanda ma rigetta la seconda.

Il punto qui interssante è l’allegata violazione del primo emendamento (liberà di parola) data dalla condotta dello sceriffo, quando tentò (troppo) energicamente di persuadere la ragazza e i suoi genitori a  rimuovere i posts, per il panico creato nella comunicà locale

Ecco il passsaggio rilevante: <<Even if short and often grammatically scurrilous, social media posts do not fall outside the ambit of the First Amendment.  To the contrary, they are exactly what the First Amendment seeks to protect.  See Packingham v. North Carolina, 137 S. Ct. 1730, 1732 (2017) (explaining that social media is often the “principal source[] for . . . speaking and listening in the modern public square”).  In the eyes of the law, when Amyiah Cohoon took to Instagram, she was no different than John F. Tinker wearing his black armband in the halls of the Des Moines public schools, or Paul Robert Cohen donning his “Fuck the Draft” jacket in the corridors of the Los Angeles County Courthouse, and her speech deserved the same degree of protection.  See Tinker v.  Des Moines Independent Cmty.  Sch.  Dist.,  393  U.S.  503,  511  (1969);  Cohen  v.  California,  403  U.S.  15  (1971);  see  also  Mahanoy Area Sch. Dist. v. B. L. by & through Levy, 141 S. Ct. 2038, 2042 (2021) (holding that a student’s social media posts containing derogatory remarks about her school’s cheerleading team were protected by the First Amendment).  

But  Defendants  disagree.    In  their  view,  Amyiah  forfeited  her  constitutional  protection  when she published a post that caused concern in the community and led  to an influx of phone calls to the Westfield School District and Marquette County Health Department.  (ECF No. 17 at 13.)  According to Sheriff Konrath, this was akin to “screaming fire in a crowded movie theater.”  (ECF No. 1-9 at 1.)  Even setting aside that the popular movie theater analogy actually referred to “falsely shouting fire in a theater and causing a panic,” Schenck v. United States, 249 U.S. 47, 52 (1919) (emphasis added), Defendants’ argument still fails.  While content-based speech restrictions are permissible in limited circumstances (incitement, obscenity, defamation, fighting words, child pornography, etc.), the Supreme Court “has rejected as ‘startling and dangerous’ a ‘free-floating  test  for  First  Amendment  coverage  .  .  .  based  on  an  ad  hoc  balancing  of  relative  social costs and benefits.’”  U.S. v. Alvarez, 567 U.S. 709, 717 (2012) (quoting United States v. Stevens, 559 U.S. 460, 470 (2010)).   Labeling  censorship  societally  beneficial  does  not  render  it  lawful.    If  it  did,  nearly  all  censorship  would  evade  First  Amendment  scrutiny.    Defendants  may  have  preferred  to  keep Marquette  County  residents  ignorant  to  the  possibility  of  COVID-19  in  their  community  for  a  while longer, so they could avoid having to field calls from concerned citizens, but that preference did  not  give  them  authority  to  hunt  down  and  eradicate  inconvenient  Instagram  posts.    See Terminiello  v.  City  of  Chicago,  337  U.S.  1,  4  (1949)  (holding  that  speech  is  protected  against  censorship  or  punishment  unless  likely  to  produce  “a  clear  and  present  danger  of  a  serious  substantive evil that rises far above public inconvenience, annoyance, or unrest”).  Amyiah’s post is not captured by any of the categorical exceptions to the First Amendment, so this Court will not balance the social utility of curtailing it against its government-assigned value.   But  Defendants  persist.    They  cast  Amyiah’s  characterization  of  her  illness  as  a  lie, insisting that because she ultimately tested negative, she was prohibited from publicly proclaiming that she had beaten COVID-19.   But the very doctors who tested her also informed her that she may  have  had  COVID-19  in  spite  of  the  negative  test.    Her  Instagram  posts  were,  therefore,  at worst, incomplete.  The notion that the long arm of the government—redaction pen in hand—can extend to this sort of incomplete speech is plainly wrong.  The Marquette County Sheriff had no more ability to silence Amyiah’s posts than it would to silence the many talking heads on cable news, who routinely pronounce one-sided hot takes on the issues of the day, purposefully ignoring any inconvenient facts that might disrupt their preferred narratives.  Indeed, even if Amyiah’s posts had been untruthful, no court has ever suggested that noncommercial false speech is exempt from First Amendment scrutiny.  See Alvarez, 567 U.S. at 720.  The Supreme Court has emphasized: “[t]he remedy for speech that is false is speech that is true.  This is the ordinary course in a free society.”  Id. at 727.  The government here had every opportunity to counter Amyiah’s speech, but it opted instead to engage in the objectionable practice of censorship.  Because her Instagram post was undoubtedly protected by the First Amendment, the Court finds that Amyiah has satisfied the first element of her retaliation claim. >>+

Il punto centrale difensivo è dunque:   In  their  view,  Amyiah  forfeited  her  constitutional  protection  when she published a post that caused concern in the community and led  to an influx of phone calls to the Westfield School District and Marquette County Health Department.  (ECF No. 17 at 13.)  According to Sheriff Konrath, this was akin to “screaming fire in a crowded movie theater.” .

Implausibile e irricevibile difesa da parte dei due sceriffi/sergenti. Il conflitto tra il diritto di informare della gravità del morbo in arrivo, parlando di se, e l’esigenza di tranquillità della comunità locale che verrebbe incrinata dalla circolazione delle foto , come se non parlarne potesse fermarlo. Da qui l’aggettivo inquietante all’inizio del post: sarebbe grave un esito opposto.

Il giudice accoglie la domanda di Amyiah (sul punto 1).

Interessante è poi il ragionamento sulla adverse action (cioè l’inibizione del diritti di parola9 a p. 7 ss., consistita nella eccessiva pressione da parte dello sceriffo (da noi non sarebbe reato? Abuso di ufficio? Violenza privata? Minaccia?)