Shield Law

Newspaper invokes Montana shield law to avoid subpoenas

Stephen Miller | Newsgathering | Feature | September 20, 2010
September 20, 2010

The publisher and two editors of a Montana newspaper are relying on the state’s shield law to quash subpoenas for their testimony in a change of venue hearing for a double homicide trial, said Pete Meloy, the newspaper’s attorney.

Lawyers for Justine Winter, the 17-year-old defendant accused of killing a mother and son when she drove her car over the center line of a Montana highway, have filed a motion for a change of venue, claiming that online comments and responses to the Daily Inter Lake’s coverage of the case have tainted the jury pool, he said.

Judge subpoenas reporter's notes from interview with accused killer

Rosemary Lane | Reporter's Privilege | Feature | September 13, 2010
September 13, 2010

A Buffalo, N.Y., judge issued a subpoena Friday for the notes of a television reporter’s interview with 44-year-old Muzzammil Hassan, who is accused of beheading his wife in 2009. Erie County Judge Thomas Franczyk also prohibited Hassan from doing any on-camera interviews.

Defendants drop subpoena for video in civil rights case

Cristina Abello | Reporter's Privilege | Feature | August 18, 2010
August 18, 2010

Two government defendants in a civil rights lawsuit yesterday dropped a subpoena for unedited video footage of a reporter’s interview with the plaintiff in the case.

Wisconsin governor signs shield law for reporters

Cristina Abello | Reporter's Privilege | Feature | May 19, 2010
May 19, 2010

Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle signed into law a reporter's shield bill protecting confidential sources and newsgathering materials.

Wisconsin's Whistleblower Protection Act, the 39th such law in the nation, provides journalists with an absolute privilege to withhold the identity of confidential sources and a qualified privilege to protect from disclosure unpublished newsgathering information.

New Jersey appeals court concurs that blogger is not a journalist

Cristina Abello | Reporter's Privilege | Quicklink | April 23, 2010
April 23, 2010

A New Jersey appeals court on Thursday affirmed a lower court's ruling that said a libel defendant could not use the reporter's shield law because not all bloggers are journalists, and the defendant was not engaged in journalism.

The plaintiff, Too Much Media, sued Shellee Hale in New Jersey after she posted comments stating that the company, which works with websites in the adult entertainment industry, was profiting from a security breach in its program.

Shield bill passed by state senate, goes to governor for signature

Cristina Abello | Reporter's Privilege | Quicklink | April 20, 2010
April 20, 2010

Wisconsin's state senate today passed, by a voice vote, shield legislation that would protect confidential sources and newsgathering materials, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

The bill will now go to Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle for his signature.

Kansas governor signs new shield law

Cristina Abello | Reporter's Privilege | Feature | April 15, 2010
April 15, 2010

Kansas became the 38th state to pass a state shield law for reporters today when Gov. Mark Parkinson signed the pending legislation, The Associated Press reported.

The law will take effect upon publication in the Kansas Statute Book.

Kansas shield bill awaits governor's signature

Cristina Abello | Reporter's Privilege | Feature | March 31, 2010
March 31, 2010

The Kansas Legislature passed a state shield law for reporters on Tuesday night that will now go to Gov. Mark Parkinson for his signature.

Both chambers of the Legislature approved the measure to provide Kansas reporters with a qualified reporter's privilege by an overwhelming margin -- the Senate voted 39-1 and the House 116-3.

Kansas Senate approves state shield bill

Cristina Abello | Reporter's Privilege | Feature | March 24, 2010
March 24, 2010

The Kansas Senate has voted in favor of a state shield law that protects journalists from the forced disclosure of private newsgathering materials, The Associated Press reported.

The bill will now go to the state House for consideration. If enacted, it would protect confidential sources and unpublished notes.

Kansas senate committee approves reporter shield legislation

Cristina Abello | Reporter's Privilege | Quicklink | March 18, 2010
March 18, 2010

The Kansas Senate Judiciary Committee today agreed to send shield legislation to the state Senate floor for consideration.

The bill, SB 211, would protect journalists from having to disclose confidential sources or unpublished notes. It was originally written by state Sen. Derek Schmidt and had bipartisan sponsorship. Main features of the legislation include a test for compelling disclosure of privileged information.