SALT LAKE CITY—Earlier this year, the Utah legislature and Governor Spencer Cox took up the important issue of kids online safety. While their effort was well-intentioned, the path they chose violates the constitutional rights of all Utahns, their children and their businesses, compromises their data security and strips away their parental rights.
Our company, NetChoice, is dedicated to protecting American values online. Today, we are suing the state of Utah to stop this package from going into effect in March. We have already won successful challenges against California and Arkansas for trying to impose similar restrictions.
It doesn’t have to be this way. NetChoice has been repeatedly speaking with Utah lawmakers about these problems since the two laws, SB 152 and HB 311, were introduced in the legislature. States like Florida and Virginia have passed bills that embrace a positive approach for digital literacy. Unfortunately, Utah’s government took a path that seizes control of the online experience from parents, disregards the importance of education, sidelines the state’s vibrant creator economy, compromises data security and violates constitutional rights.
“NetChoice believes that families equipped with educational resources are capable of determining the best approach to online services and privacy protections for themselves. With NetChoice v. Reyes, we are fighting to ensure that all Utahns can embrace digital tools without the forceful clutch of government control,” said Chris Marchese, Director of the NetChoice Litigation Center. “Now that these tools are prominent in our lives and important for our economy, young people should learn how to harness their power while developing healthy and safe habits.”
Utahns do not have to choose between their constitutional rights, parental rights, cybersecurity, kids’ safety or economic engine. With NetChoice v. Reyes, we will fight to ensure that Utah’s Invasion of Privacy Acts are halted. NetChoice looks forward to seeing the State in court.
Read the exclusive on our lawsuit in The Salt Lake Tribune.
Please contact Krista Chavez at email@example.com with inquiries.
About NetChoice v. Reyes
- Utahns are capable of mastering the digital experience for themselves and their families. But many are simply unaware of the wide variety of tools available to them to protect their safety online. They don’t need big government to force them to compromise their security.
- NetChoice is suing the state of Utah to:
- (1) ensure constitutional protections are upheld online;
- (2) protect the safety and security of all Utahns—especially children, and;
- (2) keep parents in charge of their families—not big government.
- We’re asking the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah—Salt Lake Division to halt SB 152 and HB 311 from going into effect while our case, NetChoice v. Reyes, moves through the legal system. These laws violate various parts of the U.S. Constitution:
- The First Amendment: Conditioning Utahns’ First Amendment right to share and receive information online on their willingness to hand over their most sensitive, personal data to third-party age-verification companies.
- The Supremacy Clause: Disregarding existing federal law that ensures frivolous lawsuits aren’t weaponized to curtail free speech.
- These Invasion of Privacy Acts seriously harm Utahns in additional ways, such as:
- Compromising their data security;
- Taking away their rights to run their families as they deem appropriate; and
- Undermining the state’s vibrant innovation economy.
NetChoice is fighting to protect free expression and free enterprise online in Utah and across America.