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Craigslist’s “Erotic Services” Issue Bubbles Up Again

Craigslist, the online classifieds juggernaut, has run afoul of authorities once again, over the ads in its adult section. On Thursday, the sheriff in Cook County, Ill., called the site the “largest source of prostitution in America,” and filed a civil lawsuit to get Craigslist’s “erotic services” section shut down...

Does the sheriff’s suit have a legal leg to stand on? Electronic Frontier Foundation senior staff attorney Matt Zimmerman doesn’t think so. “I would be surprised if it went very far,” he said today. Aside from Craigslist already cooperating with authorities, a federal court has already ruled that Web sites are immune to liability for what a third party posts, so long as the site doesn’t directly help create that content. And if it ever got that far, constitutional freedom of speech protections likely also apply to Craiglist, he said.

Friday, March 6, 2009
Wall Street Journal

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