Judge Says Commerce Outweighs Free Speech Issues When It Comes To Reporting On High School Football
from the say-what-now? dept
Unfortunately, however, it looks like the judge has ruled against the newspapers, saying that their right to free speech does not trump the league's attempt to make money:
"Ultimately, this is a case about commerce, not the right to a free press," Conley wrote. "WIAA has made a business decision that it will be more lucrative to give one company the rights to broadcast its tournament games, a decision that does not stifle speech or discriminate on the basis of viewpoint."Now, I can understand the basic thinking behind the ruling, and it is true that the high schools can make decisions on who they let in to games and who they keep out. But it goes a step further to then say that if you did get in and you did record video, that you can't post that video. There's no issue with the high schools or the sports association denying press credentials to future games, or asking the reporters filming the game to leave the premises. But I can't see how they have any right to sue or demand that existing video be taken down.
Furthermore, this is an issue that's only going to become a bigger and more important deal very, very quickly, as smartphones get better and better at broadcasting live video feeds. How long will it be until some enterprising folks send a team of smartphone-equipped "cameramen" to various live sporting events, and do live broadcasts from the stands? I can't wait for the legal fight over that one...