News Gathering

Controversial “First Amendment Auditors” Test the Right to Film in Public Spaces

Controversial “First Amendment Auditors” Test the Right to Film in Public Spaces

Filmed interactions with police that make headlines or spread on social media is not a new phenomenon. But a growing movement of  self-described “First Amendment Auditors”—individuals who specifically film on public property and police stations to test the rights to film in a public space—has forced some police departments to review how to respond to First Amendment audits. The audits,[Read More…]

June 18, 2019 Below the Fold, News Gathering, Speech
Film producer Harvey Weinstein leaves court in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., June 5, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid     TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Media Organizations Seek Access To Transcript of Closed Weinstein Hearing

Both the prosecution and the defense in Harvey Weinstein’s case want a critical hearing set for Friday to take place behind closed doors, citing Weinstein’s right to a fair trial. Now, 14 major news organizations are fighting for open access, asking a judge to keep the hearing open to the press and the public.

April 24, 2019 Access, Below the Fold, News Gathering
The Georgia State Capitol, in Atlanta, Georgia Photo Credit: WikiCommons

Georgia Lawmakers File Worrisome Legislation To Create State Journalism Ethics Board

April 2, 2019: Georgia Lawmakers Propose Board That Would Promote “Canons of Ethics for Journalism” A group of six Georgia Republican lawmakers introduced an “Ethics in Journalism Act,” a measure that would authorize a “Journalism Ethics Board” to create and implement ethical standards to oversee journalists’ work and penalize journalists that do not comply. If approved, the board could also[Read More…]

April 9, 2019 News Gathering, Press, Top Stories
BuzzFeed Editor-in-Chief and moderator Ben Smith asks questions of entertainment executives during the University of Southern California's Schwarzenegger Institute for State and Global Policy Inaugural Symposium in Los Angeles, California September 24, 2012. REUTERS/Gus Ruelas (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS ENTERTAINMENT MEDIA)

Ben Smith, Editor-In-Chief of BuzzFeed News Discusses Free Press Issues

Ben Smith, the Editor-In-Chief of BuzzFeed News, discusses his decision to publish the Steele dossier, a controversial intelligence memo compiled by retired British spy Christopher Steele. Smith also talks about other issues such as President Donald Trump’s repeated attacks on the press, and journalism and the privacy rights issues that arose from the Hulk Hogan and Gawker case. The Steele[Read More…]

First Amendment Watch Teacher Guide: Recording Video and Audio of Police Officers

To view this and other teacher guides, please fill out this form.  

March 8, 2019 News Gathering, Teacher Guides
United States Supreme Court Building

Ag-Gag Laws Face the First Amendment

When Upton Sinclair published The Jungle, a reported novel that exposed the abuses in Chicago’s meatpacking industry, the public response was immediate, and federal regulation soon followed. More than a century later, whistleblowers continue to play a major role in shaping public opinion and policies around agricultural practices. However, many states have enacted laws to punish journalists and activists who[Read More…]

February 26, 2019 News Gathering, Prior Restraints, Speech
FILE PHOTO: Jeff Bezos, founder of Blue Origin and CEO of Amazon, speaks about the future plans of Blue Origin during an address to attendees at Access Intelligence's SATELLITE 2017 conference in Washington, U.S., March 7, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/File Photo

“Extortion And Blackmail”: Bezos Makes Accusations Against National Enquirer Public

February 8, 2019: AMI Claims That Publishing Intimate Photos of Bezos Is Newsworthy Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos is accusing American Media, Inc. of blackmail and extortion in a blog post that included a series of threatening emails Bezos says he received from AMI and its lawyer. Bezos writes that after the National Enquirer, which is owned by AMI, published an exposé rife with intimate[Read More…]

February 8, 2019 Below the Fold, Libel, News Gathering, Press
Buzzfeed Prevails In Defamation Lawsuit Filed By Russian Executive For Publishing Dossier

Buzzfeed Prevails In Defamation Lawsuit Filed By Russian Executive For Publishing Dossier

December 19, 2018: The Judge Ruled That The Outlet Was Covered By Fair Report Privilege A federal judge ruled in Buzzfeed’s favor in a lawsuit brought by Russian technology executive Aleksej Gubarev. Gubarev claimed that he was defamed in a dossier published by Buzzfeed in January 2017 that contained unverified reports of alleged ties between Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and the Russian government.[Read More…]

December 20, 2018 Libel, News Gathering, Top Stories
Part of a series on the Pentagon Papers published by The New York Times in 1971. The Nixon Administration's attempt to stop publication was ultimately rejected in New York Times v. United States.

Harvard Historian Seeking To Unseal Documents From Probe Into Pentagon Papers Leak

December 19, 2018: The Public Needs More Insight Into The Landmark Pentagon Papers Case, She Argues  A history professor and writer is asking a federal judge to unseal the records from proceedings in two Boston grand jury probes into the leaks of the Pentagon Papers in 1971. Jill Lepore, who is seeking the records, is a Harvard professor, writer for The New[Read More…]

December 19, 2018 Access, Below the Fold, News Gathering, Press
A news stand outfitted with "Fake News" headlines for a stunt pulled off by the Columbia Journalism Review is pictured in the Manhattan borough of New York, New York, U.S., October 30, 2018. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

New Knight Study Released on The Future of the First Amendment

The Future of the First Amendment: 2018 Report of High School Students and Teachers report examines how high school students’ attitudes about the First Amendment, censorship, and the news environment are changing and what that means for the future of democracy.

December 14, 2018 News Gathering, Round-Up, Speech, Top Stories