Two questions that pertain to operating a WWW bulliten board arise out
of this discussion.
1) I understand that, as in the Prodigy case, editing contributions to
the board for content may cause us to be liable for the contributions
that *are* posted. I also understand that if we excericise no editorial
control over the bulliten board (as with the Compuserve case) we will
not be held liable. However I have a question as to whether "editorial
control" has been defined specifically as removing or editing a users
comments. That is, I wonder if taking action to block a user from the
board for a) clearly breaking a law (i.e. invasion of privacy or
defamation) or b) breaking a more specific "user agreement" (i.e.
excessive profanity) would legally constitute "editorial control" over
the bulliten board. The defamation/invasion of privacy/profanity would
not be erased or edited, but the user would not have the opportunity to
contribute comments at out bulliten board again.
2) Is there any legal precedent for claiming privately owned bulliten
boards or chat halls as a public forum? The Supreme Court has stated
that private property *may be considered* a public forum (this was over
the shopping center case, the name of which I would have to look up).
Thanks for the imput I have recieved thus far on this issue.
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