Free speech has long been a hallmark of a healthy democracy and a free society. The Internet and new communications technologies have become unprecedented tools for expanding the ability for individuals to speak and receive information, participate in political and democratic processes, and share knowledge and ideas. Recognizing the potential of these technologies, courts have extended the highest level of First Amendment protection to the Internet medium. Online free expression also requires that private online service providers be protected from legal liability for content posted by users, so they will be willing to host that speech.
CDT works to keep the Internet and communications technologies free of government censorship and content gatekeepers alike, and to extend the highest level of free speech protection afforded the Internet to all converged media. User choice and control over access to information are the key to protecting core First Amendment values while still addressing important social ills in the digital age. Through our advocacy, CDT seeks to maximize the ability of individuals to decide for themselves what they say, hear, publish, and access online.