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The legislation makes it a crime to operate an internet platform with the intent of promoting prostitution.

Supporters say the legislation will help curb the growing epidemic of online sex trafficking that often involves children, while opponents argue it could expose tech companies to costly lawsuits and infringe on free speech.

"We can't take such risk without jeopardizing all our other services, so we are regretfully taking craigslist personals offline.

Hopefully we can bring them back some day."The legislation -- approved by both branches of Congress -- amends Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act from 1996, which many online platforms saw as a vital protection from liability for content posted by their users.

The digital rights group Electronic Frontier Foundation opposed the bill, saying it would make sites responsible for their users' speech and behavior in addition to their own.