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Opposition Building For Online Disclosure Bill

The Florida House adjourned three days before the end of the session.
The Florida House adjourned three days before the end of the session.

Websites hosting music and videos could soon have to share contact information under a house measure. It passed its final committee Thursday, but the measure is losing support fast.

Despite concerns from industry giants like Google, supporters of Miami Republican Representative Jeanette Nunez’s proposal argue her bill is narrowly focused on distribution sites, and it won’t send a flood of challenges against search engines into Florida courts.

But Apalachicola Republican Representative Halsey Beshears isn’t so sure. “Personally I think that was all subjective opinion is all it was. There are mountains, there are armies of lawyers that would disagree with that, what he says. Any lawyer can come in there and drag in the third party by terms of the suit so I completely disagree with what he said.”

The bill passed, but many lawmakers say they won’t support it on the floor without major changes. Meanwhile organizations like the American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Frontier Foundation argue the plan’s disclosure requirement violates constitutional protections for anonymous speech.