Am I liable for defamatory comments made by visitors on my Web site?

Published: Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Updated: Tuesday, July 27, 2010 15:07

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Am I liable for defamatory comments made by visitors on my Web site?
Generally no. Section 230 of the federal Communications Decency Act provides broad immunity for material created and posted on your Web site by outsiders. Importantly, the CDA's immunity provisions remain in place even if you edit a post by deleting all or part of it. You do need to be careful when it comes to adding content or editing a post so extensively that a court might conclude you have produced new content. This is key because the law will not shield you from liability for content you or your staff create. And remember that the law is different for copyright – you can be required to pull down a third-party posting if you conclude, after receiving written notice from a copyright-holder, that the post contains infringing material.
For more information, check out the SPLC's guide to the Communications Decency Act, Know Your Cybershield, available here.


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Tiffany Orbison
Tue Jan 11 2011 11:53
thanks for answering on this hot question! I bet lots of blog owners nowadays are worry because of their visitors comments. Because you may not always know was it a simple article or a spam message.
So, for now situation is much clear for me :)

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