The First Amendment right to record public officials such as the police performing their official duties in public is central to our democracy. Without the ability to document and disseminate such information, citizens would lack an indispensable tool for keeping the public informed, and for holding their leaders accountable.
“Unlike Ms. Trump, [Simon & Schuster] has not agreed to surrender or relinquish any of its First Amendment rights,” wrote Judge Alan Scheinkman, the presiding judge of the state’s Appellate Division, Second Judicial Department.
Public officials using libel suits as a weapon against the press is nothing new. In the time of Times v. Sullivan, southern officials had brought nearly $300 million in libel actions against the press. For reference, Nunes alone has brought just over $900 million in defamation claims in a twelve-month period.
First Amendment Watch and FIRE are proud to launch a freshman orientation program aimed at teaching incoming college students about their free speech rights on campus. We've developed a series of modules for universities to utilize during freshman orientation, first-year seminars, and other campus programming to teach new college students about their rights and about common free speech issues they may encounter during their time in school
The decision has been met with push back by press advocacy groups who argue that the book is of "immense public interest" and should proceed without interference.