September 2021 – The Texas Supreme Court ruled on June 23 that Facebook can be held liable for sex traffickers using its platform to recruit children.
Three teen trafficking victims who met their pimps through Facebook Messenger sued for negligence and product liability. The suits claimed Facebook fails to warn users or put preventative measures in place to protect children.
Though Facebook lawyers claimed immunity under Section 230 of the federal Communications Decency Act of 1934, the justices referred to a 2018 amendment to Section 230, which clarified that online platforms are liable when relating “to sexual exploitation of children or sex trafficking, and for other purposes.”
The court also ruled that Facebook violated a provision of the 2009 Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code.
As a result, trafficking victims may now move forward with lawsuits against Facebook.