Tech Policy Podcast

#107: Digital Free Speech (w/ FEC Commissioner Lee Goodman)

July 25, 2016

Political speech has flourished on the Internet, thanks in large part to the First Amendment and a lack of regulation from the Federal Elections Commission (FEC). But is the longstanding “Hands Off the Net” consensus in danger?  Evan is joined by FEC Commissioner Lee Goodman to discuss how digital political speech is currently regulated and what threats exist for digital speech.

A couple highlights:

Goodman: “We can either recognize and embrace free speech on the internet and its wholly constructive democratic effects, or we can start regulating it, impeding it, and discouraging it, and causing everyone who wants to communicate on the internet to look over their shoulder and decide ‘am I going to be punished by my government for speaking freely on my home computer.’”

Swarztrauber: “While the first amendment does protect all kinds of speech, I think there was a particular premium on political speech. That was the real goal.”

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