Below the Fold

U.S. President Donald Trump introduces his Supreme Court nominee judge Brett Kavanaugh in the East Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., July 9, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis

SCOTUS Nominee Kavanaugh And The First Amendment: His Record, Views, And Controversies

In light of Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination, experts weigh in on his First Amendment record with mixed views. During the course of the confirmation process, Kavanaugh was questioned about reporter’s privilege and whether he would allow journalists to divulge the details of confidential conversations he had with them decades ago.

October 8, 2018 Below the Fold, Speech
Los Angeles Times Building (source: Wikipedia)

Deja Vu: LA Judge Challenged On Unconstitutional Court Order For Second Time This Month

October 13, 2018: The Times Once Again Challenged Court Order As A Prior Restraint On Free Speech For the second time this month, Superior Court Judge Gustavo N. Sztraicher rescinded a court order after he was challenged by the LA Times on two separate cases. Last week, the judge reversed an order two days after he prohibited journalists from describing[Read More…]

September 27, 2018 Below the Fold, Prior Restraints
Gene Policinski, Chief Operating Officer, Newseum Institute and First Amendment Center of Newseum Institute

Gene Policinski Commentary: Corrections Should Be Seen As Good Things, Not Weapons For Critics

The Newseum Institute’s First Amendment expert, Gene Policinski, originally published this commentary on September 21, 2018, on the Newseum blog, and has given First Amendment Watch permission to reprint.           To err is human — but, it would seem, corrections are not seen by many as divine. Inevitably, when journalists in all kinds of mediums start[Read More…]

September 26, 2018 Below the Fold, Fake News, Press
FILE PHOTO: Roy Moore (L) and Sacha Baron Cohen are seen in this combination photo in Midland City, Alabama, U.S., December 11, 2017 and in Hollywood, California February 28, 2016 respectively.   REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman (L) REUTERS/Adrees Latif (R)

Roy Moore Sues Sacha Baron Cohen For $95 Million In Defamation Case, Claiming False Portrayal As Sex Offender

September 5, 2018: The Former Alabama Senate Candidate Claims He Was Duped On Show Former Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore is suing Sacha Baron Cohen, CBS, and Showtime for defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and fraud, for implying that he is a pedophile on the July 29 episode of Cohen’s satirical show “Who Is America?” Moore is seeking $95[Read More…]

September 6, 2018 Below the Fold, Libel
The book "Unhinged" by former White House staffer Omarosa Manigault Newman on her time in the White House administration is seen for sale in Manhattan, New York, U.S., August 14, 2018.  REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton   NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES

Omarosa’s Publisher Says Trump Legal Team Threats Are “Hollow”

August 17, 2018: Simon & Schuster To Trump: You Have A “Bully Pulpit” At Your Disposal In response to threats made by the Trump campaign legal team, Simon & Schuster, the publisher of Unhinged: An Insider’s Account of the Trump White House by Omarosa Manigault-Newman, says they acted well within their rights and will continue to publish the book on schedule. The[Read More…]

August 30, 2018 Below the Fold, Censorship, Speech, Threats
Seized plastic handguns which were created using 3D printing technology are displayed at Kanagawa police station in Yokohama, south of Tokyo, in this photo taken by Kyodo May 8, 2014. Yoshimoto Imura became the first man to be arrested in Japan for illegal possession of two guns he created himself using 3D printing technology, Japanese media said on Thursday. The 27-year-old, a college employee in the city of Kawasaki, was arrested after police found video online posted by Imura claiming to have produced his own guns. Gun possession is strictly regulated in Japan. Police raided Imura's home and found five guns, two of which could fire real bullets, Japanese media said. Mandatory credit REUTERS/Kyodo (JAPAN - Tags: CRIME LAW SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY) ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. MANDATORY CREDIT. JAPAN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN JAPAN. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS

The 3D Guns Controversy: Is Computer Code a Form of Speech?

In a landmark legal move, the United States Department of State and the Second Amendment Foundation reached a settlement that would allow the digital files that can create 3-D printed guns to be freely published on First Amendment grounds.  The State Department agreed to waive the prior restraint against the Defense Distributed, a non-profit organization that develops and publishes open source guns designs that can be used in 3-D printing. But then states sued and a judge blocked the publication hours before they were set to be released.

August 30, 2018 Below the Fold, Prior Restraints, Speech
Reminding Readers That Press Is Not The Enemy Of The People, News Outlets Defend Their Right In Their Own Words

Reminding Readers That Press Is Not The Enemy Of The People, News Outlets Defend Their Right In Their Own Words

Hundreds of news outlets around the country heeded the call of Boston Globe deputy editorial page editor Marjorie Pritchard and published their defense of a free press in response to criticism from President Trump. 

August 30, 2018 Below the Fold, Press, Top Stories
Former CIA Director John Brennan departs from a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing evaluating the Intelligence Community Assessment on "Russian Activities and Intentions in Recent US Elections" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., May 16, 2018.      REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

Trump Revokes Former CIA Director’s Security Clearance

August 21, 2018: Trump Hints At Criticism As Reason For Revoking Brennan’s Clearance In A Tweet President Trump implied that the reasoning behind why he revoked John Brennan’s security clearance is because of criticism, noting in a tweet that Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper “is being nice” to him to keep his clearance. Even James Clapper has admonished John[Read More…]

August 23, 2018 Below the Fold, Censorship, Speech, Threats
Jul 8, 2016; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Detail view of a city of Pittsburgh police officer's badge covered in solidarity with Dallas police before the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports  / Reuters 
Picture Supplied by Action Images  
(TAGS: Sport Baseball MLB) *** Local Caption *** 2016-07-08T234839Z_1372567816_NOCID_RTRMADP_3_MLB-CHICAGO-CUBS-AT-PITTSBURGH-PIRATES.JPG

Threatening Lyrics In Music Video Not Protected Speech, Pa. High Court Rules

August 21, 2018: The Violent Threats Were Directed At Police Officers Who Had Arrested The Rapper  An online music video filled with violent threats directed towards two cops was a “true threat” and not protected speech under the First Amendment, the Pennsylvania state Supreme Court ruled. The high court turned down an appeal by the video’s creator who made “highly personalized”[Read More…]

August 22, 2018 Artistic Speech, Below the Fold
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and Omarosa Manigault (R) attend a church service, in Detroit, Michigan, U.S., September 3 2016. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri/File Photo

Are White House NDAs Legal? Experts Weigh In.

  Former Trump aide and “The Apprentice” star Omarosa Manigault Newman’s public dispute with President Trump following her book release publicity tour raises questions about the legality of White House employees signing non-disclosure agreements and challenges the extent of government transparency in this administration. President Trump’s campaign organization filed for arbitration, claiming that Marigault-Newman breached an NDA that she signed when[Read More…]