Professor Jonathan Askin spoke to Tech News World about an amicus brief filed by Facebook, arguing that clicking the “Like” button on its site is speech protected under the First Amendment. The brief was filed about a case in which a Virginia deputy sheriff was fired after “liking” his boss’ rival campaign.
Professor Askin agreed with Facebook’s argument, but pointed out that it may have unintended consequences for the social networking giant. “Facebook might arguably have the characteristics of a 'common carrier,' like the telephone network before it,” he said. “Along with the rights, privileges and immunities of common carriers, public policy might suggest that Facebook should someday be obligated to abide by the responsibilities of a common carrier, such as the obligation to serve all customers on non-discriminatory rates, terms, and conditions.”
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