NAC Update
Internet Censorship Lawsuit
Multnomah County Library et al., vs. United States of America, et al., No. 01-CV-1322

July 28, 2001

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Bob Morton, NAC Chairman/Exec Dir.   |
Dennis Kirkpatrick, Online Rep.      |

DATE   : July 28, 2001
SUBJECT : Internet censorship suit:
         Government's dismissal motion is denied

All Naturists:

A federal court in Philadelphia has rejected the U.S. government's attempt to dismiss a challenge to a law that forces libraries to censor constitutionally protected speech online. The court said on Thursday (July 26) that the trial can go forward as planned on February 14, 2002.

Naturist and nudist web sites are among those targeted for library censorship under the Children's Online Protection Act, which was passed by Congress and signed into law in 2000. The Naturist Action Committee is among twenty plaintiffs represented in the lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union.

In its motion to dismiss, the government had argued that those challenging the law have no valid First Amendment claim. The Court's two-paragraph order rejected that notion.

Under the law, a three-judge panel appointed by the Chief Judge of the Third Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia will hear the case; any appeal of the panel's decision will go straight to the U.S. Supreme Court, which is required to hear challenges to this law. The three-judge panel consists of Chief Judge Edward Becker of the Third Circuit, and Judges John Fullam and Harvey Bartle III of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

The case is Multnomah County Library et al., vs. United States of America, et al., No. 01-CV-1322. The American Library Association has filed a similar challenge on behalf of its members; the two cases have been consolidated by the court and will be heard together.

The Naturist Action Committee is the nonprofit volunteer political action arm of The Naturist Society. NAC's mission is to advance and protect the rights of naturists throughout North America.

For more information about NAC or for additional details of the lawsuit challenging government-imposed censorship of naturist and other web sites, visit the NAC web site at:


Bob Morton
Chairman & Executive Director
Naturist Action Committee