Web site operator liable for encouraging third-party publication of illicit content to its site

Federal law has been interpreted as protecting the operators of Web sites from liability for content posted by unrelated third parties – like commenters on Web site bulletin boards – but even that broad grant of immunity has its outer limits.Last week, a federal appeals court ruled that a company offering access to people’s private telephone records could not hide behind the liability shield of the Communications Decency Act (a/k/a Section 230) by claiming to be no more than a conduit for information gathered by third parties.