Reporters' Shield Law Protections Seen as Weakening

Are reporters' shield law protections weakening? It does seem that more reporters are being held in contempt lately.

In a trend that is making the news media nervous, a small but growing number of reporters are ensnared in the legal system for defying judicial demands to disclose where they got their information. At least 16 reporters and 14 news organizations are involved in legal fights in courthouses from New York and Washington to San Francisco.

Fighting the good fight for reporters is Reporters Committee for a Free Press. They keep an updated page on reporters receiving federal subpoenas here. If you want to get involved, sign the Petition. The organization also tracks pending legislation to create a federal shield law.

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    Sad we need a shield law, what was that about Freedom? didn't i hear that word from some big guy on the hill some times back? or was it Freedom for my ideals of what you will do for me? well maybe its the guy behind the bush?

    Re: Reporters' Shield Law Protections Seen as Weak (none / 0) (#2)
    by Fr33d0m on Thu Mar 10, 2005 at 07:25:32 PM EST
    Lets not forget that some of those reporters are shielding a potential felon in the Plame affair. I have no problem with a law to protect the press, but I don't think that should allow them to be used to violate the law. Especially when national security and potentially the lives of those who defend that nation are at risk.

    If the public has a right to know about things going on in the corridors of power, then the public also has a right to know who is providing the information. Otherwise you make the press a vehicle for lies and slander with no accountability. This may not be so important when the issue is noncriminal, but when the release of the information may itself be a crime (as so many here claim the Plame affair was), then the public has a right to know who released it. Freedom of the press is freedom to print and disseminate, not freedom from all accountability.