One Step Closer! Iowa Senate Passes Bill to Punish Big Tech Censorship

March 18th, 2021 12:19 PM

Iowa legislators proved that they were serious in the fight against Big Tech when the state Senate joined the Iowa House in passing its own bill to combat online censorship.

The Iowa Senate passed its latest measure on Wednesday to tackle the issue of Big Tech censorship. Senate File 580 could remove tax incentives from companies that censor content.  

The bill would prohibit the state from “entering into contracts with, or providing tax incentives or specified benefits to, certain companies that censor online content.” 

The bill would tackle censorship head-on. “A company shall not intentionally affect the ability of a citizen of this state to view, comment, or otherwise interact with a United States citizen’s content on the company’s internet site by limiting, blocking, or otherwise restricting any content on the company’s internet site if the content constitutes constitutionally protected speech,” according to the bill. 

The legislation would also prohibit restricting “the ability of a citizen of this state to download a social networking website on a pre-installed application store.” Companies would also not be able to restrict the “purchase [of] any protected publication or expressive merchandise on a massive online marketplace.”

The bill passed in the Iowa State Senate by a vote of 30-17. “Every Republican in attendance voted in support and every Democrat voted against it,” reported the The Des Moines Register.  

Earlier this month, the Iowa House introduced a separate bill that could fine Big Tech companies up to $100,000 for censoring users. 

Iowa is not the only state that has taken recent action against Big Tech. North Dakota and Arizona have considered legislation to take action against the dominance of Apple and Google’s app stores. Nebraska and Texas introduced legislation to hold Big Tech accountable for censorship, and Florida has been developing similar legislation. The Virginia and New York legislatures have each introduced legislation to give consumers more agency over their personal data. Maryland, meanwhile, already passed a tax on digital ad revenue. 

Conservatives are under attack. Contact your representatives and demand that Big Tech be held to account to mirror the First Amendment while providing transparency, clarity on “hate speech” and equal footing for conservatives. If you have been censored, contact us at the Media Research Center contact form, and help us hold Big Tech accountable.