University of California, Santa Barbara: Attempt to Stop Website from Using Letters "UCSB"
The University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) has abandoned an attempt to force the owner of a website called The Dark Side of UCSB from using the letters "UCSB" in his web address. FIRE protested UCSB's unconstitutional threats, and on the very same day that UCSB received FIRE's letter, the university notified Mr. Baron that it would stop pursuing the matter. "We are relieved that UCSB has come to its senses and realized that it may not prohibit those who might criticize the university from using the university's name," remarked FIRE President David French. "UCSB twice told Mr. Baron, whose website is critical of the university, that it was a crime to use the UCSB name without the university's permission. It is simply absurd for a public university to claim that it cannot be criticized by name." This case is a victory for anyone who wishes to criticize universities without fear of criminal prosecution.
- "Victory for Free Speech at UC Santa Barbara," February 4, 2005: The University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) has abandoned an attempt to force the owner of a website called The Dark Side of UCSB from using the letters “UCSB” in his web address. UCSB had threatened the site’s owner with criminal sanctions if he did not change the site’s address. FIRE wrote in protest, and on the very same day that UCSB received FIRE’s letter, the university notified the website owner that it would pursue the matter no further.
- "Letter from University of California Counsel David Birnbaum to FIRE, February 1, 2005," February 1, 2005
- "Letter from FIRE to UCSB Chancellor Henry Yang, January 31, 2005," January 31, 2005
- "UC-Santa Barbara Won't Challenge Web Site That Spotlights Crime on the Campus,"
by Andrea Foster, The Chronicle of Higher Education, February 25, 2005
- "Educ. Advocacy Group Finds School's Excuses for Censorship Attempt Suspicious,"
by Jim Brown, Agape Press, February 9, 2005
- "Calif. university ends quest to shut down critical Web site,"
by Britt Hulit, Student Press Law Center, February 8, 2005
- "UC Decides Not to Sue ‘Darkside’ Website Creator,"
by Jason La, Daily Nexus (UCSB), February 7, 2005