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Thread: SOBs Redux

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Tom R's avatar
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    Akron
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    SOBs Redux

    It is my understanding that with the use of the internet some establishments, that may qualify as Sexually Oriented Businesses (SOBs) by some definitions, are not retail customer (walk ins) oriented, aren't obvious from the outside and therefore may not pose the blighting influence on the neighborhood upon which the legal grounds for their control is based. Anyone hear of this? What is the latest case law etc. on SOBs?
    WALSTIB

  2. #2
    Cyburbian
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    Jun 2004
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    Dennis, MA
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    Quote Originally posted by Tom R
    It is my understanding that with the use of the internet some establishments, that may qualify as Sexually Oriented Businesses (SOBs) by some definitions, are not retail customer (walk ins) oriented, aren't obvious from the outside and therefore may not pose the blighting influence on the neighborhood upon which the legal grounds for their control is based. Anyone hear of this? What is the latest case law etc. on SOBs?

    I believe you are thinking about Tampa and its case against Voyeur Dorm. In that case the court basically found that the "dorm" did not advertise an address, used mostly residents and their guests or friends for their webcasts and therefor did not pose the threat to the neighborhood. In fact until the city started to enforce against it, no-one really knew it was there is my understanding.

    In discussing changes to our home occupation by-law here in MA, we discussed the concept of an SOB as a home occupation and felt that we did not want to invade a person's privacy to that degree. Thus we have chosen to ignore that it exists. If one sets up business, and it detracts from the neighborhood, in the same way a car repairshop or other heavy traffic business might, then we would take action. The other alternative is to stop everyone who has a booming mail-order business on E-Bay.

    (hopefully I have edited out all of the double entendre comments to keep this thread serious at least for now)
    Planning is much like acting, as my old theater professor used to say, "If you sin, sin boldly, only you know if you are ad libbing." I follow this adage almost daily.

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