‘E! News’ billboard can’t be displayed without permit

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday sided with the city of Los Angeles, rejecting a bid to display an “E! News” billboard without a permit, The Hollywood Reporter has reported.

According to the Reporter, Wayne Charles and Fort Self Storage had sought to display a sign featuring photographs of then-hosts of “E! News” Ryan Seacrest and Giuliana Rancic, arguing that the sign constituted “noncommercial protected speech.”

After the city and a federal judge rejected their arguments, Charles and Fort Self Storage appealed to the 9th Circuit.

A three judge panel ruled against them yesterday.

“That the underlying E! News program is itself entitled to full First Amendment protection does not cloak all advertisements for the program with noncommercial status,” the panel said. “Speech inviting the public to watch E! News is not inherently identical to the speech that constitutes the program itself.”

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