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Monday, June 27, 2005

More Detail on Today's Supreme Court Decisions

Ten Commandments: I was a little hasty before in my reporting of the Ten Commandments case. In one case, McCreary County v. American Civil Liberties Union of Ky., the Court reversed, finding that framed copies of the Commandments inside a Kentucky courthouse did violate the Establishment Clause (First Amendment). On the other hand, in another case, Van Orden v. Perry, a statue on the grounds of Texas Courthouse, one of 17 historic displays on the property, did not run afoul of the Constitution. Both cases were decided 5-4, with the swing vote coming from Justice Breyer.

File Sharing: In Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd., the Court ruled 9-0 in favor of MGM, and against a file sharing company. This is a big win for the record and file industry. However, the Court could not agree on exactly what constitutes the outer bounds of permissible software and marketing for file sharers.

Various blawgs are covering these (see link to the side): SCOTUS, How Appealing, the Volokh Conspiracy. SCOTUS has, in fact, established mini-blawgs to discuss the Commandments case and Grokster.


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