Harris’ social network ban could be unconstitutional 

Is there an argument that District Attorney Kamala Harris’ push to ban sex offenders from social networking Web sites is unconstitutional? At least one legal expert thinks so.

Chris Hoofnagle is the director of the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology's information privacy programs and an expert in information privacy law.

Social networking sites are primarily designed help people communicate with each other and a ban of sex offenders from them would be overbroad, considering a majority of users of Facebook, for example, are over the age of 18, Hoofnagle said.

“Cutting a class off from a very important communication medium could implicate first amendment issues," Hoofnagle said. “For instance, what if a law was proposed that sex offenders couldn’t use the telephone, or the mail. I mean that clearly would be overbroad and problematic. Well, social networking sites are the new mail, right?”

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Brent Begin

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