Ban on Alcohol Ads Lifted off Virginia Student Papers

A judge decided the prohibition infringed on students' First Amendment rights.

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Alcohol and drink special ads will return to the pages of Virginia student newspapers, the Cavalier Daily reports. A federal judge overturned the state's decades-old ban on alcohol-related advertising in college publications—a law designed to curb binge and underage drinking.

The ACLU filed suit almost two years ago on behalf of the University of Virginia 's Cavalier Daily and the parent company of Virginia Tech's Collegiate Times. It argued the ban violated the papers' free speech rights, unfairly singled out student publications while other unaffiliated papers in the region could still advertise freely, and ultimately cost the publications around $30,000 in ad revenue. The judge agreed that the ban did indeed infringe on First Amendment rights, adding the state government did not prove the ban had any tangible effect on college drinking.