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Unformatted text preview: The U.S. News The U.S. News Media Too Much Power? Or Not Enough? The News Matters Challenge
You Decide. If we use your suggestion, and You Decide. If we use your suggestion, and we haven’t chosen it already, you get extra credit. Submissions due to firstname.lastname@example.org by Noon Mon. The First Amendment The First Amendment
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people to peaceably assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. The Bill of Rights Ratified in 1791 Ratified in 1791 The Alien and Sedition Acts President John Adams Signs Them President John Adams Signs Them Into Law in 1798 The Supreme Court’s ‘First Great Press Case’ 1931: Near v. Minnesota 1931: Near v. Minnesota Justice Pierce Butler
“By permitting a scandal sheet such as Near to destroy the reputation, peace of mind, and even personal safety of other citizens, society is not only encouraging malice and revenge but could inflict distressing punishments upon the weak, timid, and innocent.” Justice Louis Brandeis ‘Every man has a right to publish what he wishes, and if it be defamatory or libelous suffer the consequences later.’ Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes Breaks the Tie
‘The fact that the liberty of the press may be abused . . . by purveyors of scandal does not make any less necessary the immunity of the press from prior restraint in dealing with official misconduct.’ James Madison
English Common Law allowed suppression of the press, but in America, “the people, not the government possess the absolute sovereignty.” “Some degree of abuse is inseparable from the proper use of everything , and in no instance is this more true than in that of the No Prior Restraint
Government cannot stop Government cannot stop something from being published or broadcast or posted on the Internet, except in rare instances. But, the author or organization can be punished later Libel vs. Slander Libel refers to defamation by Libel refers to defamation by print Slander refers to spoken defamation Defenses: ∙ Truth Truth ∙ Privilege Privilege ∙ Fair Comment Fair Comment There Are Two Exceptions to the No Prior Restraint Rule
• National Security • Obscenity When asked, ‘Newspapers should be allowed to freely criticize the U.S. military about strategy and performance.’ Source: The First Amendment Center, “State of the First Source: The First Amendment Center, “State of the First Other Conflicts Other Conflicts
∙ The Right to Know vs. Privacy ∙ A Free Press vs. A Fair Trial A Free Press vs. A Fair Trial ∙ The Right to Know The Right to Know ∙ First Amendment Rights for Bloggers First Amendment Rights for Bloggers and for Students “In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed . . . “ A Free Press vs. A Fair A Free Press vs. A Fair Trial The Sixth Amendment “We don’t want to discourage citizens from being well informed. They can be on the jury provided they will be fair and decide the case on what they hear in the courtroom.” A Free Press vs. A Fair A Free Press vs. A Fair Trial What Is an Impartial Jury? Chief Justice John Marshall on empanelling an impartial jury A Free Press vs. A Fair A Free Press vs. A Fair Trial Judges have other remedies : • Voir Dire • Change of venue • Gag orders • Sequestering the Jury A Free Press vs. A Fair Trial No Cameras No Cameras in the Courtroom The Right to Gather the News? 1995: 3.5 Million Documents Classified 1995: 3.5 Million Documents Classified 2005: 14.2 Million Documents Classified When asked, ‘Overall, do you think the press in America has too much freedom to do what it wants, too little freedom to do what it wants, or is the amount of freedom the press has about right?’ Source: The First Amendment Center, “State of the First Source: The First Amendment Center, “State of the First Amendment, 2007” When High School Students were asked, ‘Newspapers should be allowed to publish freely without government approval of a story.” Source: The Knight Foundation, “The Future of the First Source: The Knight Foundation, “The Future of the First Amendment.” ...
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- Spring '07