A long time ago, when I was just a lad, I was told by the old men around me that I should always remember the following statement: When men get emotional, people get hurt and killed. Now, because of an emotional reaction to what basically amounts to shitposting, Reddit the Company is going to have to answer a ton of questions, all of them uncomfortable. Section 230 is there to protect the web site and the web site operators from the shitposting trolls and bullshit spewing idiots; breaking that legal wall is a big oopsie.
It's not a secret that I no longer like Reddit as a community, a company or a site. But this fuck up by an, ostensibly, adult man who simply did not walk the fuck outside for a few hours is going to reverberate all across the so-called Web 2.0 companies. Twitter employees worked to trend Hillary Clinton news and information. Are they now subject to FEC rules and have to register as lobbyists, to give an example? Somewhere in a dank office with lots of loose paper strew across a desk, a lawyer is planning out how to take advantage of this information and run with it. I fully anticipate a spike in litigation against Reddit the company here in the next few months.
What is the line on the spez death watch? My bet is he does not last the weekend.
For any lawsuit that, currently or in the future, involves content appearing on Reddit in any fashion, it seems reasonably prudent to:
- Subpoena Reddit for all moderation and administration activity as it relates to said content,
- Depose all moderators and administrators who have access to said content.
I wouldn’t take the word of anyone at the company during routine discovery.