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NetChoice Asks District Court to Halt Law Failing Mississippi Families, Kids Online

GULFPORT, Miss.—Today, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi will hear NetChoice’s request to halt HB 1126 while our lawsuit, NetChoice v. Fitch, moves through the legal system. 

The hearing begins at 9:30 AM Central Time. There is not a livestream available. 

“Unconstitutional laws are never the answer, let alone laws that jeopardize Mississippians’ privacy and security, and violate their online speech rights,” said Chris Marchese, Director of the NetChoice Litigation Center. “We are optimistic the Court will halt this unconstitutional law while our case moves through the legal system. Parents—not politicians—should be making decisions about what’s best for their family.”

The law is scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2024.

While well-intentioned, HB 1126 is an unconstitutional overreach that courts will likely block, as has already been done in California, Ohio and Arkansas. Mandating age and identity verification for digital services violates privacy and stifles the free exchange of ideas. Mississippi requires websites to censor broad categories of protected speech. And by forcing all websites to identify users, every digital service operating in Mississippi will need to collect more data and information on their users, including children.

HB 1126 violates the constitutional rights of Mississippians many times over:

  • It violates the First Amendment because it conditions Mississippians’ access to vast amounts of protected speech on handing over their sensitive, personal data. 
  • It jeopardizes the security of all users, especially minors, by requiring them to surrender sensitive, personal information and creates a new target for hackers and predators to exploit.
  • Parents and guardians are best situated to control their family’s online presence. HB 1126 usurps the parental role and seizes it for the State.  
  • A vast amount of speech could be unintentionally censored online under the vague requirements of the government under the law, including: The U.S. Declaration of Independence, Sherlock Holmes, The Goonies, the National Treasure movie series featuring Nicholas Cage, Taylor Swift’s new album, and much more. 

Read NetChoice’s request for a preliminary injunction here. Learn more about our case, NetChoice v. Fitch, here.

Please contact Krista Chavez at with inquiries.