Obscenity and the World Wide Web

30 Pages Posted: 12 Jul 2008

See all articles by John Fee

John Fee

Brigham Young University - J. Reuben Clark Law School

Date Written: July, 12 2008


The presence of the World Wide Web has caused a flurry of interest in revisiting the Miller standard for judging obscenity - particularly its "contemporary community standards" component. However, contrary to popular argument, the constitutional issues raised by the regulation of Web obscenity are not genuinely new. It appears that those who argue that the World Wide Web is distinguishable for constitutional purposes from other methods of publishing either do not appreciate the arguments that Miller resolved, or they simply do not like the answers that the Supreme Court gave. Under current law, it is constitutionally permissible to apply the traditional test for obscenity, the Miller standard, to the internet, including its reference to "contemporary community standards" without a more particular geographic definition.

Keywords: First Amendment, Obscenity, Pornography, Community Standards, World Wide Web, Internet

Suggested Citation

Fee, John, Obscenity and the World Wide Web (July, 12 2008). Brigham Young University Law Review, No. 6, pp. 1691-1720, 2007, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1159124

John Fee (Contact Author)

Brigham Young University - J. Reuben Clark Law School ( email )

430 JRCB
Brigham Young University
Provo, UT 84602
United States

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