Is Metromedia Binding?

Everyone knows that the Supreme Court’s decision in Metromedia, Inc. v. City of San Diego (1981) is the leading case on sign regulation. For 38 years, courts have followed Metromedia’s four-justice plurality opinion in upholding laws that selectively ban offsite commercial signs. But the 4-2-3 Metromedia decision produced no majority opinion, and – as everyone also knows –...

Rethinking Reed and Commercial Speech

Ever since Metromedia, Inc. v. City of San Diego (1981), courts have been applying an ultra-lenient version of intermediate scrutiny under Central Hudson Gas & Electric Co. v. Public Service Commission (1980) to content-based regulation of commercial signs. Then in Reed v. Town of Gilbert, Arizona (2015), the Supreme Court held that content-based sign regulations are subject to strict...