Extending Pruneyard: Citizens’ Right to Demand Public Access Cable Channels
David Ehrenfest Steinglass
An appreciation of the importance of diverse viewpoints and of the commingling of those viewpoints in a democratic society animates the protection of public speech achieved by the public forum doctrine. This Note proposes that cable access advocates should ground a similar claim to access under the public forum doctrine as it has been interpreted in state courts. Cable television, and soon the new technologies of communication labeled the “information superhighway,” will far outstrip the shopping mall in altering the terms and domain of public discourse. The arguments that commended extension of the public forum doctrine to the mall thus resonate even louder in the context of those communications media.