Judge Tells Newspapers They Can't Report On News About College Trip Since It Might Impact College Funding

from the that-whole-first-amendment-thing dept

Via Romenesko we learn that a judge in Wyoming has issued a temporary restraining order against two local newspapers, barring them from reporting about a trip by the local community college’s president to Costa Rica, saying that the report was stolen… and that publishing the info could cause the college to lose federal funding. At issue is the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, which prevents colleges from revealing private info about students (a good thing). But here it’s clearly being misused. Yes, the report may include some student info, but that should not, in any way, bar publishing a story about what happened. Furthermore, that the document was leaked shouldn’t bar publication either. If that were the case, there would never be any whistleblower stories out there, or stories like the one about the Pentagon Papers. Update: Well, that didn’t last long. The original order has been dissolved, though this now has helped bring much more attention to the original story.

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