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EFF "Censorship - Internet Censorship Legislation - Washington (State)" Archive

Last Updated Thu Mar 13 10:42:59 PDT 2003

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Washington (state) governor vetoed this bill, which targets online material deemed "harmful to minors". Senate Bill 5466 was vetoed May 1995. State legislature has threatened to try to over-ride the veto, but has not done so, to our knowledge, as of June 1996. BEWARE! This bill or something like it will probably be back in late 1996 or in 1997, perhaps targeting material "obscene as to minors" or "indecent" (or some other meaningless, undefined "term of art" that targets Constitutionally-protected expression). Bill was re-introduced as SB6079, and nearly passed again. Unlike many of the various net censorship laws, this one was an attempt to replace an already existing state law on sexually explicit material, that had been ruled unconstitutional. (Version of text here is that sent to governor for veto, by both Houses. Original date of introduction of first version was in Jan. 1995.)
history of the above bill.
rollcall of votes on the above bill
State legislator Chappell responds with clarifications to the _Cook_Report_ article on SB5466 (a version of which is below, wa_sb5466_95_cook.analysis)
A journalistic analysis of the bill above (draft article for the _Cook_Report_)
Statement of CPSR/Seattle against SB5466, calling it unconstitional, and pointing out that it holds system operators liable for the actions of users.
amendment to SB5466 sponsored by state Sen. Finkbeiner, et al. Clarifies a few terms and lists a few more exceptions to what's defined as "harmful to minors" (e.g. pictures of "the female breast" [what other kind is there? Men generally don't have breast last I looked...] feeding an infant, and of course state-controlled sex-ed materials.
summary of the above bill, and very brief summary of testimony, from the state Senate.
new version of the bill that was passed then vetoed as SB5466. This version did not pass, but it was a close call. It was reintroduced in an effort to override the governor's veto.

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