From the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. June 6, 2011. Washington, D.C. — An interactive reference to the myriad legal issues specifically facing reporters who are working online has joined the library of free, online media law guides available on the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press website.
The Digital Journalist’s Legal Guide is designed to assist anyone who is disseminating news online, from an independent blogger to a reporter for a major media outlet, as well as media lawyers active in this area.
Topic areas include:
- Gathering News and Getting Information, such as rules for open records and meetings, access to courts, and newsgathering right of access to events/places.
- Protecting and Defending Your Work, explaining what to do to protect sources and fight subpoenas, steps to take if there’s a threat or actual lawsuit libel, and how to handle invasion of privacy concerns.
- Knowing the Legal Restrictions which covers understanding basic Internet regulation and how to protect a domain name, and copyright and trademark law covering both original work and “fair use” of other materials.