Indiana University Bloomington: SexFest Event Canceled After Video Causes Controversy


Indiana University - Bloomington

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Case Overview


In February 2020, student organization Sexual Health Awareness Group at Indiana University, Bloomington put on its annual SexFest, an event aimed at “providing information about and promoting safe sexual practice.” After a video taken at a SexFest demonstration on BDSM sparked controversy online, it was alleged that university administrators unilaterally canceled the last day of SexFest. FIRE wrote to IUB on February 13, 2020, explaining that if the university cut short SexFest as an effectuation of a heckler’s veto or because others found it offensive, such cancellation by administrators would raise First Amendment concerns. In response to a public records request by FIRE, IUB provided documents that demonstrated the event was not, in fact, cancelled by university officials, but by one of the event organizers.