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    Arizona Criminal Law Banning Nude Images Violates First Amendment

    On September 23, Media Coalition filed a lawsuit on behalf of some of its members, local booksellers and media organizations challenging an Arizona law banning the distribution of nude images without consent.

    The lawsuit argues that the law violates the First Amendment because it is an overbroad content-based restriction on speech. The law criminalizes a wide range of newsworthy, artistic, educational and historical images.

    Read about the case

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    Supreme Court issues ruling in First Amendment case

    On June 16, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus that “a credible threat of enforcement” is a sufficient threat of injury to establish standing in a First Amendment case when bringing a “pre-enforcement” challenge.

    The Court cited the standard in Media Coalition’s case Virginia v. American Booksellers Association of a “reasonable fear of prosecution” as an acceptable formulation of the “credible threat” standard. Media Coalition submitted an amicus brief in Driehaus.
    Read about the case

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    Legislative Tracker

    Media Coalition tracks hundreds of legislation in Congress and all 50 states that may have First Amendment implications every year.

    The Legislative Tracker includes up-to-the-minute updates of state and federal legislation, as well as Media Coalition’s summary of the legislation.

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    Only a Game: Why Censoring New Media Won’t Stop Gun Violence

    Media Coalition released a report last year in an effort to educate the public, politicians and journalists, amidst persistent claims that media causes actual violence.

    The report found that crime statistics do not support that theory; that research into media effects on actual aggression is contested and inconclusive; and that censorship of violent content is barred by the First Amendment for all types of media, but industry self-regulation works.
    Read the report

MEDIA COALITION is an association that defends the First Amendment rights of producers and distributors of books, movies, magazines, recordings, home video, and video games, and defends the American public’s First Amendment right to have access to the broadest possible range of information, opinion and entertainment.


Pennsylvania governor signs bill that chills free speech

Pennsylvania House Bill 2533 and Senate Bill 508On October 21, 2014, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett signed S.B. 508 into law. The legislation would allow a victim of a personal injury crime to bring a civil action against any offender to obtain injunctive relief for “conduct which perpetuates the continuing effects of the crime on the victim.”

We submitted a memo in opposition to the legislation and a letter to Governor Corbett urging him to veto the bill, because it is an unconstitutional prior restraint on speech and a content-based restriction. It would have a substantial chilling effect on producers and distributors of books, movies and other media. The bills would block the distribution of books like In Cold Blood and The Autobiography of Malcolm X, and movies like Goodfellas and The Thin Blue Line.

Read more about the legislation

Frequently Asked Questions: Antigone Books v. Horne

Antigone Books v. HorneThe FAQ explains why booksellers, librarians, publishers and media organizations are challenging an Arizona law criminalizing the publication of a nude photo without the consent of the person depicted. The law is an overbroad content-based restriction on speech, and its severe criminal penalties will have an unconstitutional chilling effect on booksellers and librarians. Many will simply decline to carry any materials containing nude images to avoid the risk of going to prison.Read the FAQ

Arizona criminal law banning nude images violates First Amendment

Antigone Books v. HorneA broad coalition of bookstores, newspapers, photographers, publishers and librarians filed a lawsuit in federal court today challenging a new Arizona law that criminalizes speech protected by the First Amendment. “This law puts us at risk for prosecution,” said Gayle Shanks, owner of Changing Hands Bookstore, one of the plaintiffs. “How am I supposed to know whether the subjects of these photos gave their permission?”Read the press release

North Carolina Senate Bill 744: Amended bill signed into law

On August 7, 2014, Governor Pat McCrory signed the appropriations bill into law. The law does not include the section that would have required publishers and websites to remove criminal record information or publish a retraction upon request if the person was not convicted of the crime.

New Hampshire House Bill 1144: Governor signed amended bill into law

On July 11, 2014, Governor Maggie Hassan signed New Hampshire House Bill 1144 into law, effective immediately. The arrest photo bill was amended earlier this year to instead create a committee to study “information included in arrest records and access to information on the disposition of criminal cases.”

Missouri House Bill 1665: Governor signed arrest photo bill into law

Governor Jay Nixon signed the amended Missouri House Bill 1665 into law on July 9, 2014. The bill requires removal of arrest photos from websites upon request and was amended to include an exception for news organizations. The law takes effect on August 28, 2014.

Support Media Coalition

Media Coalition is the only organization whose sole mission is to protect the First Amendment rights of the media in Congress, state legislatures and the courts. Our members represent the majority of booksellers, publishers, librarians, film, recording and video game producers, and home video and video game retailers in the United States.