Hustler Magazine, Inc. Falwell , U. In an 8—0 decision, the Court ruled in favor of Hustler magazine, holding that a parody ad published in the magazine depicting televangelist and political commentator Jerry Falwell as an incestuous drunk, was protected speech since Falwell was a public figure and the parody could not have been reasonably considered believable. Therefore, the Court held that the emotional distress inflicted on Falwell by the ad was not a sufficient reason to deny the First Amendment protection to speech that is critical of public officials and public figures.
Hustler Magazine, Inc. v. Falwell
Hustler Magazine v. Falwell | The First Amendment Encyclopedia
Already have an account? Log in! I Hustler Magazine vs. Falwell was a Supreme Court case between Hustler Magazine and Jerry Falwell and well known minister of the time that established that freedom of speech in the first amendment prohibits public figures from collecting compensation for the publication of a parody in a magazine. The Supreme Court ruled in the case with Justice Anthony Kennedy not even considering hearing the case. Vs Sullivan case from
Category:Hustler Magazine v. Falwell
A lead story in the November issue of Hustler Magazine featured a "parody" of an advertisement, modeled after an actual ad campaign, claiming that Falwell, a Fundamentalist minister and political leader, had a drunken incestuous relationship with his mother in an outhouse. Falwell sued to recover damages for libel, invasion of privacy, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Hustler Magazine appealed.
The majority acknowledged that permitting broad First Amendment protections may lead to speech that is offensive or hurtful in its criticism of public figures. However, those protections remain in effect unless the speech is both false and made with actual malice. In other words, it must satisfy both the standard applied under state law and the standard in New York Times Co. Sullivan if the target is a public figure.