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


University of California, Santa Barbara

Search all Cases

Case Overview

FIRE Victory closed

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.