NH Democrats have introduced a bill to protect themselves from whatever they decide constitutes cyberbullying. It is so bad that if it were in force today, I might be breaking that law just by asking you to contact them with your thoughts about the bill. Any bill.
Their law would allow them to decide if my asking you to interact with a public official on this matter of public business constituted Doxxing or your contact equaled cyberbullying or cyberstalking. They could, in fact, charge you (for contacting them) and me (for asking you to do it).
The trigger, literally, is their opinion about you or what you have to say about it to them. If they decide that interaction makes them feel uncomfortable, you broke their law.
Simply sharing their public information (electronically) so they can be contacted about the legislation (any legislation) could be construed as doxxing in violation of HB1159. The latter based entirely on how someone else over whom I have no control, used the information.
It both suppresses and chills free speech and any online interaction with any public official or their family members.
And third-party conversations that relate to public business or public officials connected to it need only come to the attention of individuals (or be brought to their attention) who may at any time decide to be aggrieved.
This bill is so bad (at least the way I read it) you don’t even need to be referring to them directly. If something else you wrote (not directed at or relating to them) can be construed (by them) to constitute a threat when considered with other remarks (elsewhere), you could be charged. You just need to be an elected official and say you feel threatened.
And apparently, the very act of breathing (emailing, tweeting, or using Facebook) by public officials is an administration of government (even though they can block you or ban you). And should you rub two words together that hastens their breathing (oh, my!), you could be in violation of their law.
Every effort should be made to ensure that come November they are replaced in their public offices. Until then, it is not so much our obligation to oppose this legislation – which we do – as it is to document who else in the legislature supports it. They, too, if at all possible, should be removed from office in the next election and replaced with someone who will not use that office to silence online public discourse.
The hearing for this bill is this Wednesday, 1/29/20, at 10:45 am Legislative Office Building in Concord, Room 204.