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Carafano v. Metrosplash.com, Inc.

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
339 F.3d 1119 (9th Cir. 2003)



An anonymous user of Matchmaker.com (defendant) created a profile for famous actress Chase Masterson, whose real name is Christianne Carafano (plaintiff). The profile posted sexually explicit content and portrayed Carafano as promiscuous and generally in a bad light. The profile also posted her home address and phone number. Carafano eventually found out about the profile and brought suit against Matchmaker.com. However, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act provides providers of interactive computer services “broad immunity for publishing content provided primarily by third parties.” The district court rejected Matchmaker.com’s defense based on the Communications Decency Act, finding that some of the content on the profile was directly in response to a Matchmaker.com questionnaire. The court reasoned that the content was thus not provided entirely by a third party. However, the district court granted Matchmaker.com’s motion for summary judgment on other grounds. Carafano appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Thomas, J.)

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