@PublicForum: The Argument for a Public Forum Analysis of Government Officials' Social Media Accounts


While citizens have historically marched on the streets or protested in parks to take advantage of the First Amendment, citizens in the modern world have often turned to social media to communicate their ideas and concerns to their government representatives. As new spaces for expressive activity come to light with the development of technology, courts are tasked with determining how to properly analyze government-controlled spaces on social media. This Note will examine the various approaches courts have taken to analyzing government officials’ social media accounts and will argue that Supreme Court precedent and the pluralist theory of democracy support subjecting the interactive spaces on government social media accounts to public forum analysis in order to limit the government’s ability to discriminate based on viewpoint and to provide a cause of action against the government when citizens’ speech is suppressed online.


law, First Amendment, Trump, free speech, forum



Sara J Benson (Notes Editor, Washington University Jurisprudence Review; J.D. Candidate, Washington University School of Law Class of 2020)



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