University of California, Santa Barbara: Attempt to Stop Website from Using Letters “UCSB”

Category: Free Speech
Schools: University of California, Santa Barbara

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.

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    February 9, 2005

    The University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) has backed down from an attempt to prohibit a critic’s expression of dissent. UC’s legal counsel has announced the school will no longer pursue legal action against a website that points out problems on its campus. The university recently threatened parent James Baron with criminal sanctions if he did not remove the university’s name from his website — “www.thedarksideofucsb.com” — through which he accuses UCSB administrators of responding poorly to security problems and a high crime rate on the campus. However, an academic freedom and civil liberties advocacy group came to Baron’s […]

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    February 4, 2005

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  • Letter from FIRE to UCSB Chancellor Henry Yang, January 31, 2005

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