Filter Law Challenged
On March 20,
2001, two groups filed lawsuits in Philadelphia challenging the
constitutionality of the Children's Internet Protection Act. The
American Civil Liberties Union and the American Library Association
are challenging the new federal law that, as of April 20, requires
libraries that receive federal funding to utilize internet filtering
software to block material that may be obscene or harmful to minors.
Libraries that fail to install the filtering technology could lose
federal technology funding.
The groups argue
that the law censors information that is protected by the First
Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. They maintain that the Internet
filters may fail to prevent all offending material from being viewed
while allowing reasonable internet web sites to be blocked.
Internet Protection Act received bipartisan support when it was
passed last year (it passed the Senate by a vote of 95-3). Groups
defending the law argue that it is an appropriate solution to keeping
online pornography away from minors.
lawsuits will more than likely be combined and then will be assigned
to a three-judge panel made up of one appellate judge and two district
to Legal Archive 2001