Bloomberg Law
Jan. 7, 2019, 5:23 PM

County Official’s Facebook Page Ban Ruled Unconstitutional (1)

Alexis Kramer
Alexis Kramer

A Virginia county official violated the First Amendment by banning a resident from posting on her Facebook page, a federal appeals court has ruled.

Phyllis J. Randall, chairman of the Loudoun County board of supervisors, violated the resident’s free speech rights because she used the page to perform official duties and let users post about public issues, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled Jan. 7. The decision affirmed a lower court ruling.

The case highlights the uncertainty over how the First Amendment applies to government officials’ social media accounts. Courts have reached conflicting decisions over whether ...