Senate Says Amateur Journalists Don't Deserve Shield Protection

from the and-why-not? dept

Congress has been working on a federal "shield" law that that allows journalists to protect their sources. This is an important concept, and many states already have local laws on that front. Unfortunately, as the Senate was working on its version of the bill, it's apparently decided that the law should only apply to professional journalists who make their living that way. If you happen to just write a blog post that exposes some sort of wrong, you'll have no shield protections. Or if you write for a participatory media site and blow a whistle, again, you'll have no shield protection for your sources. While not all that surprising (do you really think our Senators understand the value of participatory journalism), it's still disappointing.

Filed Under: amateur, journalists, professional, senate, shield law


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  1. icon
    lux (profile), 24 Sep 2009 @ 1:10pm

    Makes sense.

    I agree with this decision.

    Those who make their living as an investigative journalists should be afforded privileges that any Joe Blow with a video camera and a pad of paper should not.

    Is this any different from practicing medicine, law or even a Private Investigator without proper licensing? No. Why? Because you can do damage with a pen.

    Also, name 5 amateur journalist stories that NEED to protect their sources, then, answer me why THOSE SAME sources would not go to a major media outlet to break their story.

    And...go

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