The N.C. Supreme Court has reversed a lower court’s ruling and upheld the state’s ban on Internet sweepstakes.

In a unanimous opinion, Justice Robin Hudson said that the General Assembly in its attempt to ban the machines was regulating conduct, and not protected free speech.

Sweepstakes companies, who brought the lawsuit against the statute, had won at the Court of Appeals level, where that court had declared that the law was overly broad and banned protected free speech.

In her opinion, Hudson says that announcing whether a participant had won or lost a sweepstakes game was not protected free speech.

Hudson wrote:

“Telling a sweepstakes participant that he or she has won or lost is no more protected speech than calling ‘Bingo!’ or ‘21.’”