Category: News Blog

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This Thursday: CBLDF Member Appreciation Holiday Party in NYC!

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is excited to announce our annual Member Appreciation Holiday Party, commencing December 16th, from 8 pm to 11 pm, at TWINS PUB, at 421 9th Ave (between 33rd St & 34th St)!

Join Paul Pope (Heavy Liquid, BATMAN YEAR 100), who will be spinning records as our DJ for the evening. Joining us from out of town is CHEW Creator John Layman, artist Cliff Chiang (GREENDALE, DC Comics covers), and many more! The party is FREE for CBLDF Members and a $5 and up suggested donation for non-members. A gift bag is provided courtesy of IMAGE COMICS!

“Chew” The Fat With John Layman!

Win a rare chance to meet and eat with the creator of the runaway foodie thriller CHEW, published by Image Comics! The winner of this auction will spend an hour in NYC with Layman on December 16 or 17, and will also receive a signed first printing of Chew #1. This auction is open for bids on eBay right now!

After bidding, don’t forget to get one of the last remaining seats for John’s Pitching Comics Workshop on December 18 — all benefiting CBLDF!

CBLDF Year In Review!

Check out what the CBLDF’s been up to in our 2010 Year In Review mini-comic, brought to you by great CBLDF supporting artists! Enjoy this mini-comic and then please renew your membership or make a donation for great premiums in our Rewards Zone!

John Layman Presents The Secrets of Pitching Comics!

Find out what it takes to develop a winning pitch for your comics and graphic novel projects! John Layman, best known for creating the Image Comics hit “Chew,” has sat on both sides of the pitching process, as an editor for Wildstorm and as a creator. Join him for this in-depth workshop and q&a to learn the secrets of developing, refining and marketing your idea as a pitch that editors will buy! Tickets for this event are available for a $50 donation to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, and seating is extremely limited. This workshop will be on December 18, from 12 PM to 2 PM at the CBLDF office in New York City. Book your ticket now! Looking for a gift? Get a signed copy of Chew Omnivore Edition v. 1 here!

Get 75 Years of DC Comics Personalized by Paul Levitz!

Support the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and give the most memorable comics gift under the tree by ordering 75 Years of DC Comics: The Art of Modern Mythmaking SIGNED AND PERSONALIZED by author Paul Levitz! Until 7pm ET on December 8th a donation of $225 will get you a copy of this extraordinary book which can be inscribed to the recipient of your choice and signed by Paul Levitz. Levitz will sign these books on December 10th and books will ship on December 13th, just in time for the holidays. Don’t miss out on this extraordinary package, benefiting the CBLDF! Get your copy now!

CBLDF Wins 2010 Downs Intellectual Freedom Award

For their dedication to the preservation of First Amendment rights for members of the comics community, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF) has been selected to receive the 2010 Robert B. Downs Intellectual Freedom Award given by the faculty of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

CBLDF Has The Best Gifts For The Fan In Your Life

This holiday season, give the fan in your life a gift that makes a difference by donating to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund! The CBLDF has the best donation rewards in comics, including signed graphic novels in our Rewards Zone and one of a kind original art in our eBay Store. Donations to the CBLDF are the best gift because we offer great premiums that you simply can’t get anywhere else, and most importantly, because your donation supports the CBLDF’s important legal work.

Right now the CBLDF’s Rewards Zone boasts a massive assortment of signed graphic novels from creators including Neil Gaiman, Frank Miller, Garth Ennis & more. Rewards just in include: Flash: Rebirth signed by Geoff Johns, Batman: Cacophony signed by Adam Kubert, every volume of Scott Pilgrim, signed by Brian Lee O’Malley, the Chew Omnivore Edition signed by John Layman, and the Complete Essex County signed by Jeff Lemire. All of these books are signed by CBLDF supporting creators for the purpose of rewarding our donors. All are great gifts!

If you’re looking for something even more unique, the Fund has a massive array of one of a kind art available on eBay, including original pieces by Arthur Adams, Michael Allred, Yoshitaka Amano, Lee Bermejo, Simone Bianchi, Cliff Chiang, Guy Davis, Jock, Jim Silke, and many more!

This holiday season, make a difference with your gift giving, and have the coolest gift under the tree by donating to the CBLDF!

George Will Talks Comics Censorship

In a Washington Post op/ed piece that draws heavily upon ground covered by the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s amicus brief in EMA v. Schwarzenegger, pundit George Will discusses the moral panic facing the video game industry today and its roots in the censorship in comics. Check out his perspective here.

NYC: CBLDF Needs Volunteers Next Week!

Want to help the CBLDF? Next week is a great opportunity, because we need volunteers in our home office on Monday and Tuesday to help us send our end of year report to our members. Get a first look at this cool item, and make a difference to the Fund by assisting us with this important mailing. We’re looking for volunteers who can give at least 4 hours between 10 am and 10 pm on either or both days. In exchange for your work, we’ll be serving lunch and dinner, and will also offer a $20 credit in the CBLDF Reward Zone. Please email a volunteer application to if you can help!

Link: Analysis of Steve Kutzner Protect Act Case

The Hooded Utilitarian’s Sean Michael Robinson delivers a well constructed analysis of the case of Steve Kutzner, an Idaho man who plead guilty to possession of “obscene visual representations of child sexual abuse” last month.

The most widely reported element of Kutzner’s conviction is that he plead guilty to possessing pornographic art depicting characters from the Simpsons, but Robinson digs into the plea agreement and talks to the prosecuting attorney to find that the case wasn’t so clear-cut. Kutzner was flagged by German authorities who believed he was participating in file-sharing of actual child pornography, and when United States authorities investigated they found there was evidence enough to argue that he had, although that evidence was triable.

Robinson’s reporting paints a vivid picture of the legal issues at stake. He speculates on the probable defensive posture that would have been taken if this case had gone to trial, emphasizing that the government would have had the burden of proving the material Kutzner plead guilty to possessing was obscene.

More intriguingly, he illustrates how the threat of mandatory minimum sentences is being used by prosecutors to scare up plea agreements from people like Kutzner and Handley.

The conclusion Robinson arrives at is that, in this case, probably Kutzner was guilty of something. But the law in question is being applied on a case by case basis in a way that makes more people vulnerable to prosecution for possession of drawings. As more prosecutors begin taking up these sorts of cases, the line between art and obscene visual representations of child sexual abuse is in the eye of the prosecuting beholder.

It’s a good article about a bad law.