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Week 4

by: Laura Castro Lindarte
Laura Castro Lindarte

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Week 4 notes. Professor gave some information about the exam. 25 multiple choice questions (scenarios, truth and false), 10 case matching (cases in the outlines and slides), 7 or 8 short answer and...
Media Law
William L. Youmans
Class Notes
Media, Law
25 ?




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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Laura Castro Lindarte on Thursday September 22, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to SMPA 2173 at George Washington University taught by William L. Youmans in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 5 views. For similar materials see Media Law in Journalism and Mass Communications at George Washington University.

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Date Created: 09/22/16
September 20, 2016  Speech Distinctions  (P.2)   ● Burning Speech:   ○ Texas v. Johnson: ​ ohnson burned flag which was illegal under Texas law,  Supreme Court found that there was no appealing government interest and that  law was content­based (served no larger purpose)   ■ Usually symbolic speech is held to intermediate scrutiny but Texas v.  Johnson was held to strict scrutiny   ■ Unlike draft case when burning draft cards could actually hurt the drafting  process, brunning the flag has no government interest   ○ Justice Brennan said that​ peech being offensive is not enough for it to be  regulated   ● Speech in schools: ​ONLY PUBLIC SCHOOLS, NOT PRIVATE ONES   ○ Court has given school parental authority over kids but still a governmental body  so not completely free to restrict students  ○ School are limited public forum​ eneral rule is that limits must be justifiable by  impacting the school’s goals   ○ Protests in school:   ■ Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District: s​ tudents  wore black armbands and got suspended for refusing to take them off,  Supreme Court said that wearing armband was “pure speech” so  protected by 1st amendment (schools need to show that expression  interferes with educating mission)   a. Example of symbolic protest   ■ Morse v. Frederick: ​Frederick displayed a banner that said “bong hits for  Jesus” to get on TV and got suspended for refusing to take it down,  Supreme Court said that school was meeting mission and that banner  went against anti­drug policy (not political speech or protest)   a. OK TO STOP SPEECH THAT GOES AGAINST EXISTING  SCHOOL POLICIES   ○ Offensive or inappropriate content:   ■ Island Trees Union Free School District: l​ imit library ab​ ontrol what  books are seen ​in library   ■ Bethel School District v. Fraser: ​required student assembly and speakers  running for office made dirty joke​ upreme Court said okay to punish  speakers because schools are suppose to teach how to be respectable  citizens and speech went against school policy   ■ Hazelwood v. Kuhlmeier: p​ rincipal censored 2 pas in school­sponsored  newspaper because going against privacy of those interviewed, ​ upreme  Court rules that what s written in school­sponsored paper will be credited  to school so okay to control message   a. High school newspaper    ○ Compelled Orthodoxy: ​ chools can’t force students to express beliefs that they  don’t believe in, ​seen in pledge cases   ○ Religion in schools​ ourts ban religious content but say school should provide  neutral setting for religions   ○ Campus speech: U​ niversities have obligation to maintain broad discussion   ■ Public University funding of groups should be neutral   ■ Case with signing of statement of believe okay because by forcing people  to sign a statement of believe the club was limiting who could join it   ○ Speech codes: ​usually get struck down       September 22, 2016  Libel & Emotional Distress: The Plaintiff’s Case (P. 1)  ● Libel: ​one example of defamation   ○ Background:   ■ Designed to protect individual reputat​ messes with 1st amendment  because free speech allows for criticism so blurry line between criticism  and hurting someone’s reputation)   a. Long common law tradition   b. Has natural consequence   ■ Libel: written words, slander: spoken words   ■ Seditious libe​ urting government’s reputation (can be illegal to censor)   a. Sedition Act of 1798:​ nyone talking, publishing or writing about  government could get arrested   b. Have chilling effect on speech (stop people from speaking)   ■ MUST HAVE DAMAGE TO REPUTATION   ■ SLAPPs: ​strategic lawsuit that is created to ​quiet (chill) speech   a. Parties with most resources can use libel to silence people,  anti­SLAPPs statutes have allowed defendants to have defense  paid for (increases the cost of unfair lawsuits)   ■ Internet has led to ​more libel because anonymous is easier, allows  defamation to spread faster and easier publication and correction   a. Decreases libel cases because how hard it is to win them, usually  get settled out of court  ● Libel defined: ​The Plaintiff’s Case   ○ Statement of fact ​(NOT OPINION)   ○ Publication​ was it published?)  ■ Third party rule: ​at least one other person not plaintiff or defendant serves  as publication  a. When dealing with the mass media publication is assumed   ■ Replication​ re those that republish held responsible?   a. Usually republisher is as responsible as is the originator   i. Problem due to social media’s fluidly   b. Vendors and distributors: ​ hose that are selling, ​different because  distributor doesn’t edit studd unlike publishers   i. ISPs are distributors NOT PUBLISHERS ​(communications  Decency Act (CDA)­ intermediate vendors are not held  accountable)   ii. Reno v. ACLU brought down many of CDA except this   ○ If unknown publisher,​ laintiff must show as IDENTIFY AS POSSIBLE, STEPS  TAKEN TO IDENTIFY AND CASE WOULD WITHSTAND A MOTION TO  DISMISS (​ strong case even without identity)   ○ Identification: ​is what is being said about plaintiff? Make it difficult to sue when  not direct   ■ Identification of a group member without name​ 25 or fewer, sometimes  less than 100)   ■ Identification in fiction = NOT CLEAR ANSWER   ■ Directly named meets standard, also picture, description (easily seen by  outsiders)   ○ Defamation: ​ACTUAL injury to reputation   ■ Libel per se: obvious and direct   ■ Libel per quod: not direct (requires proof)   ■ Reason person standard   ○ Business reputation:​ ssentially same requirement to sue   ○ Trade libel: ​libel of products   ● Falsity: ​substantially true (mostly true), substantially false (mostly false)  ○ Minor false details not enough to win case   ○ Look at “substance, the gist, the sting of the libelous charge can be justified   ■ Implication and innuendo: i​ mply wrongdoing (indirect and can amount to  false statement)   ■ How you say it, state things without conclusion but obviously bad   ● Fault:   ○ Negligence: ​for private figure, minimum level of fault that needs to be shown →  ordinary duty of care to meet truth   ○ New York Times v. Sullivan: ​1964, do public figures show negligence?   ■ NYT published ad of Civil Rights and accused southern police of using  illegal things to stop protests   ■ Sullivan (cop) sued   ■ Supreme Court said that public official needed to show “actual malice”  (information they know is wrong or had no care of truth)   ○ Actual Malice: ​knowledge of falsity and reckless disregard for true   ■ Bad journalism by Saturday Press is example ​ court will look at specific  journalistic values) but will loo​ rgency of story, reliability of source  and believability of what is said.   ■ Hard to proof it because of state of mind question 


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