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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 01:44 PM
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Media Shield Law Remains in Doubt
Source: Associated Press

Media Shield Law Remains in Doubt
By HOPE YEN 2 hours ago

WASHINGTON (AP) As federal judges order more reporters to disclose their confidential sources, news organizations are pinning their hopes on congressional passage of a media shield bill the Bush administration opposes as a threat to national security.

The legislation being considered in the Senate offers only modest shelter for reporters wanting to protect the identity of confidential sources. In many cases, it would leave the fate of journalists and their sources to the discretion of judges who increasingly have been willing to jail or fine them.

Out of nine high-profile cases since 2003 where journalists were ordered to reveal information, four might have turned out differently had the proposal awaiting Senate action been law.

For them and dozens of other reporters subpoenaed for confidential information or the names of those providing that information, judges generally would have to weigh the "public interest" of the media reports; that is a legal analysis many judges already do. They would retain the power to jail reporters who refuse to name sources who leak information involving national


Read more: http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5imnw-JbpRlPTlI6sQ4gD...
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OKthatsIT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 02:05 PM
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1. So why isn't is a LAW, yet?
Could the US SENATE be delaying this for some nefarious reason? Are our Senators afraid of what might disclosed? OR they knew something and didn't act?

I'm not implicating anyone...but it does make you wonder.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Mar-15-08 03:12 PM
Response to Original message
2. Finally, a vote on a media shield law?
The Secrecy File > Archives > 2008 > March > 06

Finally, a vote on a media shield law?
By Rebecca Carr | Thursday, March 6, 2008, 04:39 PM


Looks like pressure is building from top senators of both parties for a vote on a media shield law.

Just in time for Sunshine Week?

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and Arlen Specter, R-Pa., urged their party leaders today to call a vote on a bill that would protect a journalists confidential sources in most cases.

The House passed a reporter shield bill by a veto-proof 398-21 vote last fall. But the Senate version has been stalled since October because of objections from the administration and Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz.

But pressure is now building for swift passage of the measure. Why? Former USA Today reporter Toni Locy (pictured) was found in contempt of court last month for refusing to comply with a court order from U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton to name government sources who supplied information about a former Army scientists possible role in the 2001 anthrax attacks. Locy could personally face fines up to $5,000 per day unless she reveals her sources.
(snip)

The legislation is supported by a wide array of media organizations including the Newspaper Association of America, the Associated Press, the American Society of Newspaper Editors, The New York Times Company, The Washington Post, the New England Press Association, the Vermont Press Association, and the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association.

The main thrust of Kyls opposition (which mirrors the administrations) is concern that the measure would hamper investigations into illegal leaks of classified information as well as efforts to thwart an impending terrorist attack. Another sticking point is whether bloggers should be included in the definition of a reporter.

More:
http://www.statesman.com/blogs/content/shared-blogs/was...
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