DeSantis signs new Digital Bill of Rights taking companies like Google head on

by Jason Collins

Photo: Alamy

As of June 6, 2023, social media users in Florida will be able to take control of their personal data. This is thanks to the new Digital Bill of Rights signed into law by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

According to a statement from DeSantis, “Floridians should have the right to control their own personal data.”

“If a multibillion-dollar company is conspiring to take your data and sell it or use it against you, it is your right to be able to protect that data. No longer will the Big Tech oligarchs be able to commandeer your personal information and deprive you of the right to access, confirm, or delete that data as you wish,” he explained further.

This bill is now more important for Floridians than ever in the wake of Facebook’s Meta privacy lawsuit. The signing of Senate Bill 262 is part of DeSantis’s latest move to tackle companies like Google head-on. In May 2021, before the start of his political campaign, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a similar bill to prevent social media sites from de-platforming political candidates.

“The fusion of government and tech for the purpose of censoring things that dissent from the official narrative, that’s a huge, huge threat to freedom of speech in this country,”

Gov. Ron DeSantis

Sen. Jennifer Bradley, R-Fleming Island, was a sponsor of the bill. The biggest reason for the push of this bill was the threat to Americans’ freedom of speech, especially with regard to censorship. 

Additionally, “Google and other large search engines will now be required to “disclose whether they prioritize search results based on political ideology.” 

The bill is also a huge step in protecting children’s online safety. It prevents the collection, sharing, or selling of children’s personal information gathered from games and even educational services that target children.

Furthermore, Bill 262 will also protect the following: 

  • The right to control your own personal data across social media platforms,
  • The right to know that your personal data will not be used against you when applying for a job or taking out a new insurance policy,
  • The right to opt out of having your information sold.

To learn more about the Digital Bill of Rights, click here

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