July 18, 2019

Advertising Law News and Analysis

2 min

"Public Access" isn't a "Public Function": No First Amendment Liability for Privately Managed Public Access Channels

The Supreme Court recently clarified the state-action doctrine in Manhattan Community Access Corp. v. Halleck. The result has made it all the more important for content creators to understand the types of entities hosting their content.

The plaintiffs in Halleck alleged that MNN, the private nonprofit that manages the New York City public access channels, violated their First Amendment rights by restricting them from using the channels based on the content of their programs.

What is "Incidental:? Ninth Circuit Provides Guidance on How to Determine if a Fax is an "Advertisement" Under the TCPA's Junk Fax Provisions

On May 17, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court announced it would not hear an appeal in Supply Pro Sorbents, LLC v. RingCentral, Inc., apparently satisfied with a Ninth Circuit ruling that the inclusion of a one-line company identifier on a fax cover page was not in violation of the TCPA's bar on unsolicited advertisements. In Supply Pro, the Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court's dismissal of a Junk Fax Prevention Act (JFPA) claim, holding that an unsolicited fax that merely contained an identifier of the sender and link to its website in an otherwise information facsimile did not run afoul of the JFPA. Persuaded by FCC guidance, the Ninth Circuit held that a "one-line identifier" is only an "incidental advertisement" that does not render the entire fax an advertisement within the meaning of the JFPA.