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Why Uber and Etsy came up so much in the Supreme Court’s social media arguments

Photo illustration of the Supreme Court building with pixelated red and white stripes.
Cath Virginia / The Verge | Photos via Getty Images

During Monday’s Supreme Court arguments in a pair of consequential social media cases, the justices prodded for ways they could rule without giving either side everything they asked for.

The justices seemed largely skeptical of the most sweeping provisions in Florida’s and Texas’ social media laws, which would force certain tech platforms to carry speech even when they don’t want to. But they also looked for the boundaries of tech companies’ First Amendment rights — seeking to understand when they become conduits for the transfer of information, rather than expressive platforms themselves.

The laws at the center of the fight, Florida’s SB 7072 and Texas’ HB 20, were created in the name of countering what conservative legislators have…

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