On September 17, 2020, the First Amendment Clinic presented to over 100 Georgia municipal attorneys on the current state of the law regarding public officials blocking constituents on social media.

A critical mass of courts — including the three Circuit Court of Appeals to have so far addressed the issue — find that it constitutes unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment for a public official who operates an interactive social media account in their capacity as a state actor to deny individuals access to that account based on dislike of or disagreement with their speech. The presentation was hosted by the Georgia Municipal Association and presented by Mark Bailey (2L) and Clinic Director Clare Norins.

Norins and Bailey, again hosted by the Georgia Municipal Association, reprised the presentation in December 2020 for approximately 50 local public officials from across the state.


*Downloads are current as dated and not intended to be legal advice.

A blue screen with a large button titled "Block" at the center with a mouse clicker over it.

The Issue

Social Media Blocking

The First Amendment protects speech on social media platforms that have been designated as public forums by government officials or agencies. Government officials cannot block individuals from accessing their social media pages simply because the government dislikes or disagrees with their speech. Read more about our work protecting citizen speech here.

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