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US papal visit site defends dodgy advertising

The right to promote pornography is a constitutional matter, it seems

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The company behind an irreverent Web site covering the Pope's visit to the US at the end of the month has vowed to fight a court decision to close it down. Seth Warshavsky, president of the adult content company Internet Entertainment Group, alleges that the federal judge in the case "trampled on [his] Constitutional rights" and has called in a hotshot attorney to lead the appeal. Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh ruled that the site, www.papalvisit1999.com, was, in effect, a trademark of the St Louis archdiocese and, therefore, infringed its ownership. "This was an absurd ruling that oppresses our freedom of speech and allows the Church to dictate who will cover the Pope's visit to St Louis and under what circumstances," said Warshavsky who has republished the material on a different site. Both sites contain information on the Pope's visit as well as adverts and links to a number of IEG's adult-oriented sites. The St Louis Archdiocese argued that visitors were confused by the name of the site and offended by its content. ®

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