Thursday, September 7, 2006
sfgate.com: Boalt Hall School of Law at UC Berkeley CrimProf Franklin Zimring recently commented about the controvery surrounding and Oakland mother's creation of a Web site at MySpace as a repository to gather comments and well-wishes for her daughter who faces trial on murder charges at the end of next month.
Unknowingly, the Oakland mom ventured into the chasm between cyberspace and the rules on pretrial publicity, and her actions have raised questions about what, if anything, courts can do to place restrictions in the vast confines of the Internet.
"The question of the Web site is one that will not be going away," Franklin Zimring said.
"It's the democratization of the capacity to publish," Zimring said. "Not too many people in San Francisco own newspapers, but everyone and his mother can own a Web site, and I can say that between now and this time next year, this will happen more and more.
"These are new wrinkles, and sooner or later some power will be given to the courts and some limits litigated on its use, but neither has happened yet to my knowledge," he added. Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]