Category: Press Releases

Alex Cox Joins CBLDF As Development Manager

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is excited to announce the addition of Alex Cox to the New York office staff, in the position of Development Manager. Alex comes to the organization with fifteen years experience working as a comics retailer in New York City, including opening and managing his own store, ROCKETSHIP. As Development Manager, Alex will oversee the organization’s development activities, including fundraising at conventions, online, and at events throughout the United States. He will also coordinate volunteers for events and conventions, and for assistance in the New York office.

CBLDF & Dark Horse Cheer Free Speech Victory in Ninth Circuit!


The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and Dark Horse Comics applaud a decision issued by United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit holding that two Oregon statutes that criminalize distributing sex education and other non-obscene materials to minors are unconstitutional in violation of the First Amendment. The State of Oregon argued that the statutes applied only to “hardcore pornography,” but the Ninth Circuit found that they applied to much more, including Kentaro Miura’s manga “Berserk,” Judy Blume’s “Forever,” and Margaret Atwood’s “A Handmaid’s Tale.” The plaintiffs did not challenge Oregon’s existing law making it a crime to contact a minor with the intent of having sexual contact. CBLDF and Dark Horse were among the plaintiff group challenging the statutes.

Mike Richardson, publisher of plaintiff Dark Horse comics says, “We were extremely happy to see these statutes overturned. Our Constitution’s First Amendment was intended to keep the hands of the government off the printing presses of America. Creators everywhere can breath a sigh of relief that these laws, open to interpretation and likely to be abused, have been put down.”

Full announcement and text of decision follow the jump!

Comic Book Legal Defense Fund Urges Supreme Court to Reject New Restrictions on Speech in Video Game Censorship Case


Comic Book Legal Defense Fund today filed a friend-of-the-court brief in Schwarzenegger v. EMA, urging the Supreme Court to affirm the Ninth Circuit’s decision that a California law banning the sale or rental of any video game containing violent content to minors, and requiring manufacturers to label such games, is unconstitutional.

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund submits that, if allowed to stand, California’s law would reverse fundamental First Amendment principles by creating a new category of unprotected speech, diminishing the First Amendment rights of minors, and reducing First Amendment protection for new media. The CBLDF argues that the law under review is the most recent example of government improperly attempting to regulate content by using junk science, and calls upon a history of moral panics against media that includes the 1950s crusades against comics that crippled the industry and harmed the art form. The CBLDF asks the Supreme Court to deny California this attempt to roll back protections guaranteed by the First Amendment, as it and other courts have correctly done in the past.

Read on for the full release, and brief.

CBLDF Joins Challenge To Alaska Censorship Law

CBLDF joins a coalition of organizations and local booksellers filing suit to block a broad Alaska censorship law that bans constitutionally protected speech on the Internet on topics including contraception and pregnancy, sexual health, literature, and art and also threatens retailers of books, magazines, movies and other media.

Signed in May by Governor Parnell and effective July 1, the law, Section 11.61.128 of the Alaska Statutes, imposes two severe restrictions on the distribution of constitutionally protected speech on the Internet and in book and video stores and libraries. The law could make anyone who operates a website or communicates through a listserv criminally liable for nudity or sexually related material, if the material can be considered “harmful to minors” under the law’s definition. In effect, it bans from the Internet anything that may be “harmful to minors,” including material adults have a First Amendment right to view. Also, a bookseller, video retailer, or librarian can be prosecuted if he or she is unaware that it contains nudity or sexual content and unknowingly sells, rents, or loans a book, video, magazine or other media to a minor whether online or in a brick and mortar location. Violators of either part of the law can be sentenced to up to two years in prison, must register as sex offenders and could be forced to forfeit their business.

Robert Corn-Revere Named CBLDF Legal Counsel

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is pleased to announce the engagement of Robert Corn-Revere as the organization’s new legal counsel. Bob will lead the CBLDF’s legal program, serving as the first responder to First Amendment emergencies that come to the organization’s attention, as well as providing guidance and assistance to the comics community on legal issues that impact their First Amendment rights. He succeeds legendary First Amendment advocate Burton Joseph, who passed away earlier this year.

Corn-Revere is one of the country’s most prominent First Amendment experts, with extensive publications and litigation experience.

CBLDF Announces Changes To Board of Directors

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund announces changes to its Board of Directors made at the Board’s meeting at Comic-Con International. Chris Powell stepped down as President, citing successfully meeting the goals he set upon taking the presidency in April of 2009 as the reason for the change. Powell will remain on the Board as a director. Larry Marder, the creator of Beanworld, and editor of this CBLDF’s Liberty Annual 2010 was elected to succeed Powell as President. Dale Cendali, a nationally recognized leader in the field of intellectual property, joins the Board as a director.

CBLDF Relocates New York Headquarters!

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is pleased to announce that it is relocating its headquarters to a larger space in New York City. Effective June 1, the new CBLDF address is

255 W. 36th Street,
Suite 501,
New York, NY 10018.

All other contact information remains the same. The CBLDF will be closed until Monday, June 7 while setting up the new office, but can still be reached by emailing info@cbldf.org, or leaving a voice message at 212.679.7151 or 800-99-CBLDF.

Because of the office relocation, fulfillment of memberships and premiums is delayed. If you have already placed an order and it is behind, please feel free to email info@cbldf.org with concerns or questions. If you are interested in placing an order today, please note that our fulfillment operations will resume on Wednesday, June 9th. Thank you for your patience and support during this transition.

“Relocating to the heart of the Midtown West neighborhood into this new space is an essential part of the CBLDF’s growth campaign,” says CBLDF Executive Director Charles Brownstein. “Our new space will allow us to open up to wider options of volunteer programs, fundraising and education work, and to improve our efficiency to better serve our contributors.”

Welcome To The New CBLDF.Org!

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is a community of people who love comics and recognize the First Amendment as the cornerstone of the medium’s creative vitality. The new CBLDF.org is designed to reflect and serve that community, with frequently updated news about comics, free expression, and the people who are taking strides to keep both healthy and strong.

The CBLDF Salutes Chicago With A World Class C2E2!

This weekend the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund lands in the windy city with an incredible array of events and exclusives for our supporters at the inaugural edition of C2E2! Join us for An Evening with Neil Gaiman with special items from CBLDF, BPAL & Neverwear; Signings with Tony Harris; an exclusive new print by Gaiman and Harris; and the launch of the CBLDF Exclusive Benefit BPAL fragrance Banned in Boston!