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NetChoice Raises Concerns with the Manager’s Amendment to the EARN IT Act – The Bill Still Has Fundamental Problems

Today, NetChoice, a trade association fighting for free expression and free enterprise online, flagged that despite good intentions, the EARN IT Act still threatens encryption and privacy, and runs afoul of the Constitution.

“Sens. Graham and Blumenthal’s new draft of the EARN IT Act doubles down on its encryption, privacy, and constitutional problems. Despite seeking to protect children, EARN IT will make the internet less safe for all of us, including our kids,” said Carl Szabo, Vice President and General Counsel at NetChoice. “By kicking the issue to the states, Sens. Graham and Blumenthal propose an even stealthier move to mandate backdoors to encryption. EARN IT enables existing state laws to undermine encryption for every American, from coast to coast.”

“This bill still jeopardizes current federal law and creates the very Fourth Amendment problems that could give those credibly accused of child exploitation a Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free Card. The EARN IT Act will chill constitutionally protected speech, just like we’re seeing with FOSTA/SESTA, and give criminal defendants yet another means to challenge their convictions,” continued Szabo.

“Sens. Graham and Blumenthal are rushing a highly flawed bill through the Senate Judiciary Committee that, like its prior drafts, does more harm than good. If Congress is looking to address child safety online, it should listen to concerns over encryption and the Fourth Amendment and abandon the EARN IT Act for alternative solutions.”

NetChoice’s latest work on the EARN IT Act highlights the Fourth Amendment implications of the EARN IT Act in detail. Read more about how this bill could potentially be a “Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free” Card here.