Sunday, May 8, 2005
The ongoing Apple v. Does case adds to the continuing confusion about just who should be considered a journalist, as Julie Hilden discusses in a piece on CNN's website April 27th. The California-based Bear Flag League has submitted an amicus brief in the O'Grady case, available along with other relevant documents through the Electronic Frontier Foundation website. For a review of the Vanessa Leggett case, which Hilden also mentions, see Daniel Scardino, Vanessa Leggett Serves Maximum Jail Time, First Amendment-Based Reporter's Privilege Under Siege. Leggett was a part-time English instructor who refused to turn over her notes pursuant to a grand jury subpoena; she had gathered them during the course of her research for a true crime work. In part because because it was to be her first book, and because Texas has no shield law, her claim that she was entitled to a professional journalist's privilege came into question. The Supreme Court later denied cert (535 U.S. 1011 (2002)). Read the lower court O'Grady ruling here. See the Reporters' Committee for Freedom of the Press Shields and Subpoenas page here.