Study & review for the final exam in this class
It will cover the Introduction, History, Prior Restraint, Libel, Privacy, Obscenity and Copyright chapters (cumulative from Mid-Term) along with specialized areas.
Be sure you can
- list elements of the First Amendment and its international equivalents
- apply general and professional ethics to a situation
- apply knowledge of libel case law to a situation.
cases to remember
Schenck v U.S., 1919
Brandenburg v Ohio, 1969
Near v Minnesota, 1931
New York Times v US, 1971
Cherry v Des Moines Leader, 1901
Collier v Postum, 1907
New York Times v Sullivan, 1964
AP v Walker, 1967
Curtis v Butts, 1967
Texas Cattlemen v Oprah Winfree, 1998
Regina v Hicklin, 1868
Miller v California, 1973
Pope v Illinois, 1989
Reno v. ACLU, 1997
Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music — 1994
Community for Creative Non-Violence v. Reid, 1989
Sony v. Universal City Studios, 1984
MGM Studios Inc. v. Grokster Ltd., 2003
Viacom v YouTube, 2012
Sipple v Chronicle Publishing, 1984
Flynt v Falwell, 1987
Sherrod v Brietbart, (current case)
Journalism – FOIA, FPFT
- Sunshine & Open records laws
- Shephard v Maxwell
- Know how to make an FOIA request
- Know proper exemptions to Sunshine & Open records laws
- Newsroom searches / Zurcher v Stanford Daily, 1974; also 2010 James Madison University newsroom search & what happened
- Branzburg v Hayes, 1972 and subsequent cases (eg Judith Miller) / Be able to explain why you support (or don’t support) reporter privilege
- Cohen v Cowles Media, 1991
- Gannett v DePasquale / Richmond Newspapers v Virginia (access to court)
- Jeffrey Thomas and the Tara Rose Munsey murder trial as an example of the impact of pre-trial publicity
- Know ethical dimensions of Free Press / Fair Trial issues
- Valentine v. Chrestensen rationale for unprotected status of commercial speech and what happened to that rationale in subsequent decades
- Central Hudson Gas & Electric v. PSC / Four-part test for commercial speech
- “Right” of advertising in public media, print media and broadcast media (Lehman v Shaker Heights, Miami Herald v Tornillo, and FCC Section 315)
- Corporate speech: Truth in advertising (Nike v. Kasky) and campaign finance (Citizens United)
- FTC regulations: product demonstrations & normal use
- FTC regulations: health and safety claims
- Tobacco advertising: 2010 restrictions on advertising; RJ Reynolds v FDA, 2011, Lorillard v Reilly, 2001
- Liquor advertising: Rubin v Coors, 44 Liquormart v Rhode Island, Educational Media v Sweicker
- Advertising to children: Childrens Television Act (see Broadcasting) and ethical issues
Broadcasting – Production
- Communications Act of 1996 (aka Telecommunications Act) and Reno v ACLU, 1997
- Contrast broadcasting and print regulation: Trinity Methodist Church v. FRC, 1933 as opposed to Near v. Minnesota, 1931
- Radio / Communication acts of 1912, 1927 and 1934, along with 1996
- Office of Comm. of United Church of Christ v. FCC, 1969
- Origin and cases involving Equal Time Rule (Section 315)
- Origin and cases involving Fairness Doctrine
- Indecency on the air: Mae West 1937, FCC v. Pacifica Foundation, 1978 and FCC v. Fox, 2012
- News distortion and hoax rules
- Ownership rules before Communications Act 1996
- 2003 FCC order and cross-ownership controversy
WEB AND NEW MEDIA
- Reno v ACLU, 1997 — struck down the Communications Decency Act (part of the Telecomm act of 1996)
- Court said the internet is “fully protected” but broadcasting content is regulated (because of intrusiveness, scarcity of spectrum)
- Court said “Good Samaritan” filtering could stand.
- Zeran v AOL (testing “Good Samaritan” and ISP liability)
- Case involved ISP liability for things that an independent speaker said about a plaintiff
- Technology cases– Sony, Napster, Grokster, recent Google/YouTube cases
- DMCA and similar copyright cases (Eldred, Tenenbaum)
- SOPA controversies – weakening of “safe harbor”
- Internet regulation
- (p. 515 – 518) Consumers dont have to be given a choice of cable modems; Net neutrality legal fights have just begun
- (557-561) Communications Decency Act went to the heart of the question of regulation, and the Supreme Court said: “The interest in encouraging freedom of expression in a democratic society outweighs any theoretical but unproven benefit of censorship.”
- (625 – 627) Domain names, meta tags, trademarks and the Lanham Act
Definitions, laws and concepts
- Legal tests: strict scrutiny, intermediate scrutiny, Sullivan, Central Hudson, clear and present danger versus imminent action test, etc.
- Five sources of law: Constitutional, Common (courts), Equity (courts), Legislative (Congress), Regulatory (Executive agencies).
- Federal and state court systems, diversity jurisdiction
- Court procedure and terms: certiorari, remand, protective order, warrant, demurrer, summary judgement, stare decisis, ex parte, tort, venue
- Case citation style
- Burden of proof in defamation cases.
- SLAPP suits and “veggie” libel
- Sedition acts of 1798, 1918
- Seditious and criminal libel as opposed to civil libel
- Five elements of libel
- Defenses against libel and privacy suits
- Slander as opposed to libel
- Four types of privacy torts and how the match up to other areas of law (Misappropriation is like copyright; intrusion is similar to trespassing; false light very similar to libel; and publication of private facts is unique)
- Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act, 1998
- DMCA, 1998
- Bern Convention
People and historical events
- Magna Carta, English Civil War, Glorious Revolution,
- Montesque, Locke, Mill, Milton, Voltaire, Jefferson, William & Mary
- Seditious Libel / John Peter Zenger case
- Virginia Constitution, First Amendment, Fourteenth Amendment
- Alien & Sedition Act of 1798
- Comstock Act of 1873
You should know the basic ethical traditions and principles and be able to describe your own professional ethical code.
Essay / short answer questions
Read a brief description of a situation and decide if there is a risk of libel, invasion of privacy, incitement to riot or other legal problems
Optional essay questions — May ask for written response to issues in case law, ethics, or trends in media regulation
- Why should (or shouldn’t) journalists have a claim of privilege to protect sources?
- As a journalist, how would you handle a leak from the prosecutor’s office when a murder trial is coming up and the jury has not been empaneled?
- As a web designer, why the Reno v ACLU “good samaritan” provisions can protect you.
- How you could apply “substantial transformative value” to a copyright parody situation.
- How has advertising regulation changed since the 1940s?
- How have ownership regulations changed for radio and TV since the 1980s and what about that cross-ownership controversy ?
- Why did Charles Dickens’ character Mr. Bumble say “the law is an ass” ?