Legal critics are blasting a new California law that would force the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) to remove an actor or actress’s date of birth from his or her profile as a violation of the website’s free-speech rights, The Hollywood Reporter (THR) said in a story published Tuesday.
The law, signed into effect by Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown on Saturday, enjoyed “overwhelming” support in the state’s legislature, THR said. The bill, lobbied for by the powerful Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA), was couched as an effort to protect older performers from age discrimination in Hollywood.
“The law applies to entertainment database sites that allow paid subscribers to post résumés, headshots or other information for prospective employers,” THR explained. “Only a paying subscriber can make a removal or omission request, but the statute also encompasses any ‘companion’ websites under common control with the paid site — for example, IMDb as well as IMDb Pro.”