Victorious video games industry asks Supreme Court to make California pay its attorneys

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The U.S. Supreme Court handed the video games industry a victory last month when it ruled unconstitutional a California law that banned the sale or rental of violent titles to children. Although the industry is breathing a sigh of relief and proclaiming the ruling a victory for free speech, it did not come cheap.

Now it faces a motion filed by the Entertainment Software Association that would make California reimburse the industry group for over $1 million in attorney’s fees.

The trade association representing U.S. computer and video game publishers on Monday filed a motion to recover its legal expenses, arguing that “California persisted in defending a law that Plaintiffs warned the Legislature was unconstitutional before it was passed; that was previously found to be unconstitutional by the district court and a unanimous panel of the Ninth Circuit; and that is similar to at least eight other laws invalidated as unconstitutional prior to the time that California sought certiorari in this case.”

“We look forward to moving forward and working together to raise awareness about the valuable tools and information available to parents,” said Michael D. Gallagher, CEO of the ESA. “From the start of this misguided legislation, then-Governor Schwarzenegger and specific California legislators knew that their efforts to censor and restrict expression were, as court after court ruled, unconstitutional and thus a waste of taxpayers’ money, government time, and state resources.”

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Jayson Peters

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