New in legislation: Nebraska Legislative Bill 892
L.B. 892 would make it a crime to communicate online using indecent, lewd or lascivious language or to suggest a lewd or lascivious act with the intent to annoy, offend, harass or terrify.
In our memo to legislators, we argue that the bill would criminalize a wide variety of speech such as Ann Coulter’s books, Bill Maher’s and Jon Stewart’s comments on their TV shows, Stephen King novels and horror movies.
Read more about the bill »
In legislation: New Hampshire Senate Bill 465
S.B. 465 would bar the dissemination of sexually explicit images without the consent of the person in the image, if the person has a reasonable expectation of privacy.
In our memo to legislators, we argue that the bill is overbroad and would criminalize a wide variety of First Amendment-protected material.
Read more about the bill »
Ongoing litigation: Louisiana age verification law
Media Coalition recently filed additional documents supporting our arguments in Garden District Book Shop v. Stewart.
U.S. District Court Chief Judge Brian Jackson heard oral arguments on the motion for preliminary injunction in December.
Follow the case »
MEDIA COALITION is an association that protects 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.
- Column: “Don’t mock of ignore students’ lack of support for free speech. Teach them.” https://t.co/FqelUA041J
- The Supreme Court denied certiorari in Electronic Arts v. Davis, the right of publicity case. https://t.co/B8YrHGKvNk
- The U.S. Senate voted to hold Backpage in contempt over their ads, sparking a likely free speech fight: https://t.co/rzAGblkTcd
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Iowa bill could force websites to censor certain sexual material
Senate File 2039 would apply the state’s “harmful to minors” law to “electronic communication devices.” We are opposing the bill to the extent that it applies to material generally available on the internet. There is a substantial body of case law striking down the application of “harmful to minors” laws to general communication online. These laws restrict the online speech of adults to what is acceptable to minors and violate their First Amendment rights.
South Dakota legislation would apply to news, art images
House Bill 1243 would criminalize the distribution of nude photos without the consent of the person depicted. The bill would go beyond targeting malicious invasion of privacy and threatens the First Amendment rights of publishers, librarians, news sources and documentary filmmakers. In our memo, we urged legislators to narrow the scope of the bill, in order to punish bad actors without sweeping in newsworthy, historical, educational or artistic images.