First Amendment Amicus Brief in Wikimedia v. NSA

Yesterday, with the help of great local counsel, we filed a law professor’s amicus brief in Wikimedia v. NSA.

Brief of Amici Curiae First Amendment Legal Scholars

The ACLU is challenging the NSA’s “Upstream surveillance,” which involves copying Internet traffic (including emails, chats, and web browsing) as it crosses the fiber optic backbone of the Internet.

I filed the brief, with local counsel, (or really, attempted to file based on the court’s discretion) on behalf of First Amendment Legal Scholars, to emphasize the importance of First Amendment privacy challenges for our self-governing democracy. The brief explains that surveillance can give rise to a number of First Amendment injuries that confer standing on plaintiffs, even after Clapper v. Amnesty International. We counsel the court to avoid potential conflicts with, and unintended consequences for, First Amendment law.

Signatories include: Marc Blitz, A. Michael Froomkin, David Goldberger, James Grimmelmann, Lyrissa Lidsky, Toni Massaro, Neil Richards, and Katherine Strandburg.