Computer & Communication Industry Association
PublishedApril 2, 2024

Protecting youth or infringing upon fundamental rights? Examining the First Amendment implications of HB 3

notification This post was originally published 28/03/2024 by Florida Politics

We firmly support the authority of parents — not the state — in deciding what is best for their child.

In an age where digital connectivity shapes the very fabric of our society, Florida’s newest social media legislation, HB 3, stands out for its significant restrictions on internet access — particularly for younger users. Gov. Ron DeSantis recently signed HB 3 into law, raising questions about preserving First Amendment rights in the digital sphere.

A significant provision of HB 3 would prohibit those younger than 14 from owning social media accounts and mandate the termination of accounts already created by users under 14. While we appreciate and share Florida lawmakers’ concern toward younger internet users, we question the effectiveness of this approach.

HB 3, though perhaps well-intentioned, poses challenges to the First Amendment rights guaranteed to all Americans, regardless of age. The legislation directly violates the right to free speech by encroaching on the rights of younger users’ ability to access information and participate in online conversations. Young people will be denied the opportunity to engage in the online exchange of ideas and stay informed about current events that shape the world in which they are growing up.

Read the full article on Florida Politics

Khara Boender

State Policy Director, CCIA
Khara Boender is the State Policy Director at CCIA, where she oversees engagement with policymakers at the state and local level.

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