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Unformatted text preview: The First Amendment and Government Regulations Freedom of the Press-The First Amendment allegedly prohibits federal regulation of speech and press, yet the Communications Act of 1934 and Telecommunications Acts of 1996 have imposed federal regulations.-Publishers of newspapers own the press and paper. Broadcasters use the broadcasting spectrum which is owned by the public. (renting the right to read someone else’s property) Two Court Cases- Red Lion Decision (1969)- The Supreme Court ruled that the FCC’s rule that entitled persons attacked on a broadcast media to reply to their attackers was legal and just.- Tornillo Decision(1974)- The Supreme Court overthrew a Florida law which gave political candidates the right to reply to printed attacks. Regulated Fairness- The Fairness Doctrine- in effect until 1987. Upheld by Red Lion Decision. - Personal Attack Rule- stations have a duty to inform individuals or groups of personal attacks- Political Editorial Rule- A candidate must be given a chance to response when a licensee (station) endorses an opponent.-Both rules repealed in 2000. Exceptions to the Rules-FCC mandates access for ideas of public importance only!- Fairness dealt with the overall programming of the station, not just one issue.-*Equal Times Doesn’t Mean Equal Time* Public’s Right to Know vs. Personal Privacy- NY Times vs. Sullivan (1964)- political from south that said NY Times had libeled him, Times won because has to prove with “deliberate malice”. - Hustler Magazine vs. Falwell (1988)- Falwell, televangelist with followers, sued in Virginia---won first level. (fake advertisement). Hustler Magazine’s owner Flint won because: “Proof of emotional distress (even with) bad motive” can’t protect public figures from satirical assaults, no matter how ‘outrageous’”. Free Press vs. Fair Trial-What happens when two amendments clash? What takes precedent: the first amendment rights to a free press and free speech or the constitutional rights to a fair trial?-New York State vs. Steinberg (1988)- lawyer in NY, coke fiend and beaten family. Not convicted of murder, manslaughter: tainted jurors due to press coverage-State of California vs. OJ SImpson (1995)- trial on tv: you don’t know! Extremely important trial and basically turned into a soap opera: press coverage can affect ability to get fair trial Legislative Decisions- Radio Act of 1927-Federal Radio Commission (FRC)-Communications Act of 1934-Federal Communications Commission (FCC)-Telecommunications Act of 1996-”Scarcity Factor” deals with the fact that the amount of space and number of slots available is scares, over-the-air radio/tv, The FCC-Five (5) Members-Only (3) can be from the same party-”Serve the public interest, convenience and necessity” There is no definition of public interest*-Used for political purposes-FCC vs. Pacifica Foundation-George Carlins’ Seven Dirty Words-”Time of Day” *Supreme Court ruled for FCC not on content but on “time of day”...
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This note was uploaded on 02/06/2012 for the course COMM 189 taught by Professor Miller during the Fall '08 term at Rutgers.
- Fall '08