Media Law Prof Blog

Editor: Christine A. Corcos
Louisiana State Univ.

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Martin Johnson, LSU Journalism Dean, Passes Away

Louisiana State University has let us know of the sudden death of Martin Johnson, dean and professor at the university's Manship School. The dean passed away in his sleep last night. His wife Sherri, a professor in the History Department, and his son survive him.

Dean Johnson was a leader in the field of journalism and mass communications, and the author of  Changing Minds or Changing Channels (2013) as well as other publications. He had led the Manship School for two years. The Baton Rouge Advocate has more here, LSU's student paper The Reveille here


September 29, 2020 | Permalink

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Craig and Tarantino on An Hundred Stories in Ten Days': COVID-19 Lessons For Culture, Learning, and Copyright Law @CraigCarys @bobtarantino

Carys J. Craig, Osgoode Hall Law School, and Bob Tarantino, Dentons Canada LLP, are publishing 'An Hundred Stories in Ten Days': COVID-19 Lessons for Culture, Learning, and Copyright Law in the Osgoode Hall Law Journal. Here is the abstract.

In the face of a pandemic, copyright law may seem a frivolous concern; but its importance lies in the ever-expanding role that it plays in either enabling or constraining the kinds of communicative activities that are critical to a flourishing life. In this article, we reflect on how the cultural and educative practices that have burgeoned under quarantine conditions shed new light on a longstanding problem: the need to recalibrate the copyright system to better serve its purposes in the face of changing social and technological circumstances. We begin by discussing how copyright restrictions have manifested in a variety of contexts driven by the coronavirus lockdown, focusing first on creative engagement and then on learning, foregrounding the damage done by encoding a permission-first approach into governance structures and digital platforms. These stories unsettle the common copyright narrative—the one that tells us that copyright encourages learning and the creation and dissemination of works—laying bare its disconnect from the current realities of our digital dependency. Turning to consider the justifications for copyright control, we underscore the critical role of user rights and substantive technological neutrality in crafting a flexible and fair copyright system for the future. The article concludes with some lessons that might be drawn from these tales of copyright in the time of COVID-19 to inform the development of new digital copyright norms for whatever “new normal” emerges.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

September 26, 2020 | Permalink

Wilson and Land on Hate Speech on Social Media @richardawilson7

Richard Ashby Wilson and Molly K. Land, both of University of Connecticut School of Law, are publishing Hate Speech on Social Media: Towards a Context-Specific Content Moderation Policy in the Connecticut Law Review. Here is the abstract.

For all practical purposes, the decision of social media companies to prohibit hate speech on their platforms means that the longstanding debate in the United States about whether to limit hate speech in the public square has been resolved in favor of greater regulation. Nonetheless, revisiting these debates provides several insights essential for developing more empirically-based and narrowly tailored policies regarding online hate. First, a central issue in the hate speech debate is the extent to which hate speech contributes to violence. Those in favor of more robust regulation claim a connection to violence, while others dismiss these arguments as too tenuous to support regulation. The data generated by social media, however, now allow researchers to begin to empirically test whether there are visible, measurable harms resulting from hate speech. These data can assist in developing evidence-based policies to address the most significant harms of hate speech, while avoiding overbroad regulation that is inconsistent with international standards. Second, reexamining the U.S. debate about hate speech also reveals the serious missteps of social media policies that prohibit hate speech without regard to context. The policies that social media companies have developed attempt to define hate speech solely with respect to the content of the message. As the early advocates of limits on hate speech made clear, the meaning, force, and consequences of speech acts are deeply contextual, and it is impossible to understand the harms of hate speech without reference to local political realities and the power asymmetries between social groups. Regulation that is abstracted from this context will inevitably be overbroad. This Article revisits these hate speech debates and considers how they map onto the platform law of content moderation, where emerging evidence indicates a correlation between hate speech online, virulent nationalism, and violence against minorities and activists. It then concludes by developing specific recommendations to bring greater consideration of context into the policies and procedures of social media content moderation.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

September 26, 2020 | Permalink

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Scalzini on The New Related Right for Press Publishers: What Way Forward? @SilviaScalzini

Silvia Scalzini, Luiss Guido Carli University Department of Law, is publishing The New Related Right for Press Publishers: What Way Forward? in Handbook of European Copyright Law (Eleanora Rosati, ed., Routledge, 2020) (Forthcoming). Here is the abstract.

Following the entry into force of Directive 2019/790/EU, a new related right has been added to the EU catalogue (Article 15). Indeed, a new right has been introduced in favour of press publishers for the reproduction and making available to the public of press publications in respect of online uses by information society service providers. The main aim of the EU reform is to support the sustainability of the press by creating a level playing field between digital services and press publishers, where the latter may find a way to recoup a return on their investments. This objective is clearly reflected in the construction of the right, which is inherently unbalanced regarding opposing rights and interests, thus risking to (further) fragmenting the consistency of EU copyright and related rights system. After a necessary review of the interests at stake, the chapter discusses the main concerns raised by the introduction of the right at the EU level. Then it moves to the analysis of the effects of the first national implementation of Article 15 on the competitive dynamics between press publishers and digital platforms. The chapter concludes with a glimpse into some conceivable ways forward to avoid inconsistencies and unintended consequences, while at the same time (possibly) fostering the fairness and the well-functioning of copyright-focused markets.

Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

September 24, 2020 | Permalink

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Reporters Committee For Freedom of the Press Hiring For Legal Fellow, Other Positions @rcfp

The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press is hiring immediately for a new legal fellow position that will expand its capacity to better identify, support, and address the legal needs of journalists of color, newsrooms led by people of color, and reporters covering issues pertinent to communities of color, across the country. Supported by the Borealis Racial Equity in Journalism Fund, the Borealis Legal Fellow will be part of a team of Reporters Committee attorneys who provide pro bono legal services to individual journalists, including documentary filmmakers, and news organizations.

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis. The position is for one year, with the possibility of an extension for an additional year. More information about the posting is available here

Additionally, the Reporters Committee is also hiring for multiple 2021 legal fellowships. More information about these positions is available here.

September 17, 2020 | Permalink

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

From the Law Commission of Ontario: Defamation Law in the Internet Age: Final Report (2020) @LCO_CDO

The Law Commission of Ontario has published Defamation Law in the Internet Age: Final Report (March 2020).

This is the Final Report of the Law Commission of Ontario’s (LCO’s) Defamation Law in the Internet Age project.
The LCO’s project examined Ontario’s defamation laws and how they should be updated to account for “internet speech,” including social media, blogs, internet platforms and digital media. The Report concludes that law reform is needed to modernize defamation and better protect freedom of expression in an online world. These reforms should build on successful common law developments and Ontario’s anti-SLAPP legislation.
The Final Report makes 39 recommendations addressing Ontario’s Libel and Slander Act, the substantive law of defamation, publication, notice, limitation periods, injunctions, jurisdiction, take-downs, internet intermediaries and related issues.
Major recommendations include: • Ontario should introduce a new Defamation Act to promote access to justice and adapt defamation law to the realities of the internet. The new Act should include provisions:
o Encouraging alternative dispute resolution of online defamation disputes;
o Establishing a new notice regime for defamation complaints;
o Establishing a “single publication rule”;
o Establishing a two-year limitation period for defamation actions; and,
o Expanding courts’ authority to order interlocutory injunctions to take-down online content in limited, prescribed circumstances. • The new Defamation Act should also establish new legal responsibilities for internet platforms that host third party content accessible to Ontarians.
These duties should include obligations to: o Pass on notice of defamation complaints to online publishers; and,
o Take down content if the publisher of the content does not respond to notice. • Internet platforms that do not fulfill these duties should be liable for court fines. In order to protect free expression, intermediary platforms should not be considered publishers where they passively host third party content.
A full list of recommendations is in Appendix A of the Report.

September 16, 2020 | Permalink

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Goldman on How Section 230 Enhances the First Amendment @ericgoldman

Eric Goldman, Santa Clara University School of Law, has published How Section 230 Enhances the First Amendment in the American Constitutional Society Issue Brief (2020). Here is the abstract.

This Issue Brief explores how Section 230 interacts with the First Amendment. It begins by discussing Section 230’s substantive benefits, then discusses its procedural benefits, and concludes by arguing that proposals to eliminate Section 230 would create critical gaps in the law that the First Amendment would not adequately back-fill. Losing Section 230 would substantially reshape the Internet for the worse. Yet, shockingly, that is exactly the direction so many of our political leaders apparently think we should go.

Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

September 15, 2020 | Permalink

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Goodyear on Copyright Liability as a Model for Restricting Fake News

Michael Goodyear, University of Michigan Law School, is publishing Is There No Way to the Truth? Copyright Liability as a Model for Restricting Fake News in volume 34 of the Harvard Journal of Law & Technology. Here is the abstract.

A proliferation of fake news has flooded U.S. websites and social media. From misinformation affecting the 2016 election to individuals making profits off of creating false stories, the United States desperately needs a legal response to the fake news crisis. However, U.S. law has effectively forestalled any attempts to bring fake news to heel. The First Amendment has been held to protect fake news. The Communications Decency Act, codified as Section 230, protects online platforms from the remaining potential sources of vicarious liability for fake news. Instead, gradually, self-regulation by websites has started to fill this void. Proposed solutions have tried to look forward, suggesting revisions to the First Amendment and Communications Decency Act doctrine, or analyzing self-regulation by websites. However, these proposals have ignored an already existing model for regulating unwanted conduct online: the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act imposes certain obligations on online service providers to remove copyright infringing content posted on their websites in exchange for a liability safe harbor. While copyright and fake news are different, ten distinct principles can be elucidated from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. These principles provide insights into how online regulations could advance, whether through websites’ own self-regulation, or in codified law if the First Amendment and § 230 regime is relaxed in the future. Keywords: Fake News, Digital Millennium Copyright Act, Fake News Regulation, Section 230, Communications Decency Act

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

September 10, 2020 | Permalink

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Cheah and Barros Sierra Cordera on Section 230 and the Twitter Presidency

Michael Cheah, Vimeo, Inc.; University of Miami School of Law,  and Erika Barros Sierra Cordera, Vimeo, Inc., have published Section 230 and the Twitter Presidency in Northwestern University Law Review Online, 2020. Here is the abstract.

In response to Twitter’s decision to label one of the President’s tweets misleading, the Trump White House issued an executive order to limit Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act via agency rule-making. In the Order, Trump calls for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to “interpret” Section 230 in a manner that curtails websites’ ability to remove and restrict user speech. This article analyzes the Order and concludes that this effort will fail. First, the FCC does not have rule-making authority to issue the proposed rules. Second, the proposed rules cannot be issued because they are inconsistent with the statute. Finally, we discuss the policy implications of the proposed rules and argue that they would actually lead to less speech and engagement on the Internet, not more of it.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

September 1, 2020 | Permalink

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Grygiel and Sager on Unmasking Uncle Sam: A Legal Test For Identifying State Media @NewhouseSU @Weston_Sager @jmgrygiel

Jennifer Grygiel, S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communication, and Weston Sager are publishing Unmasking Uncle Sam: A Legal Test for Identifying State Media in the UC Irvine L. Review (2020). Here is the abstract.

In December 2018, the Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee published a report detailing how the U.S. Agency for Global Media, the flagship federal state media agency, improperly targeted Americans with its content through social media 860 times over a two-year period. U.S. state media agencies have enormous resources, and if left unchecked, could unduly influence free public discourse and threaten the independence of the American free press. To address this growing concern, this Article proposes a new comprehensive legal test for identifying state media that incorporates existing approaches employed by the federal government and private media entities for analyzing government publications.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

August 27, 2020 | Permalink

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Hudson on Copyright Guidance for Using Films in Online Teaching During the COVID-19 Pandemic @DrEmilyHudson

Emily Hudson, King's College London School of Law, has published Copyright Guidance for Using Films in Online Teaching During the COVID-19 Pandemic. Here is the abstract.

This Guidance discusses copyright options for using feature films and other audiovisual content in online teaching. It responds to concerns amongst UK higher education institutions (HEIs) that moving education online as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic raises new copyright risks. At many HEIs, in-person lectures may not be possible in the coming academic year due to COVID-related social distancing requirements. Even if some face-to-face teaching is possible, many students will undertake some or all of their studies remotely. One particular concern has been ensuring that Film Studies departments can screen feature films to students online, this being an essential part of those programmes. But lecturers in other disciplines also use a variety of films in their teaching, making these copyright questions of broader relevance. HEIs are keen to know whether they may use audiovisual content in online teaching without a licence. The key take-home message from this Guidance is that there are a number of exceptions in the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (CDPA) on which HEIs may be able to rely. It focuses in particular on the fair dealing exception for illustration for instruction in s. 32 of the CDPA, and quotation in s. 30(1ZA).

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

August 12, 2020 | Permalink

Thursday, August 6, 2020

Alan Dershowitz Says Recent "The Good Fight" Episode Defamed Him

Ron Charles discusses defamation by fiction and Alan Dershowitz's allegation that a fictional lawyer on the tv series The Good Fight defamed him in a recent Jeffrey Epstein-themed episode, "The Gang Discovers Who Killed Jeffrey Epstein." Read Mr. Charles's essay in the Washington Post.

Here's more from Entertainment Weekly.

Here's a short bibliography on defamation by fiction.

Libel in fiction, from the Freedom Forum Institute

Michael Savare, Falsity, Fault, and Fiction, UCLA Law Review 

Vivian Deborah Wilson, The Law of Libel and the Art of Fiction, Law and Contemporary Problems

August 6, 2020 | Permalink

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Crews on The Case Against Social Media Content Regulation@wayne_crews

Clyde Crews, Jr., Competitive Enterprise Institute, has published The Case against Social Media Content Regulation: Reaffirming Congress’ Duty to Protect Online Bias, 'Harmful Content,' and Dissident Speech from the Administrative State as CEI, Issue Analysis 2020, no. 4. Here is the abstract.

As repeatedly noted by most defenders of free speech, expressing popular opinions never needs protection. Rather, it is the commitment to protecting dissident expression that is the mark of an open society. On the other hand, no one has the right to force people to agree with one’s ideas, much less transmit them. However the flouting of these principles is now commonplace across the political spectrum. Government regulation of media content has recently gained currency among politicians and pundits of both left and right. In March 2019, for example, President Trump issued an executive order directing that colleges receiving federal research or education grants promote free inquiry. And in May 2020 he issued another addressing alleged censorship and bias by allegedly monopolistic social media companies. In this political environment, policy makers, pressure groups, and even some technology sector leaders — whose enterprises have benefited greatly from free expression — are pursuing the idea of online content and speech standards, along with other policies that, if compulsory, would seriously burden their emerging competitors. The current social media debate centers around competing interventionist agendas. Conservatives want social media titans regulated to remain "neutral," while liberals tend to want them to eradicate harmful content and address other alleged societal ills. Meanwhile, some maintain that Internet service should be regulated as a public utility. Blocking or compelling speech in reaction to governmental pressure would not only violate the Constitution’s First Amendment — it would require immense expansion of constitutionally dubious administrative agencies. These agencies would either enforce government-affirmed social media and service provider de-platforming — the denial to certain speakers of the means to communicate their ideas to the public — or coerce platforms into carrying any message by actively policing that practice. When it comes to protecting free speech, the brouhaha over social media power and bias boils down to one thing: The Internet — and any future communications platforms — needs protection from both the bans on speech sought by the left and the forced conservative ride-along speech sought by the right. In the social media debate, the problem is not that big tech’s power is unchecked. Rather, the problem is that social media regulation — by either the left or right — would make it that way. Like the banks, social media giants are not too big to fail, but close regulation would make them that way. American values strongly favor a marketplace of ideas where debate and civil controversy can thrive. Therefore, the creation of new regulatory oversight bodies and filing requirements to exile politically disfavored opinions on the one hand, and efforts to force the inclusion of conservative content on the other, should both be rejected. Much of the Internet’s spectacular growth can be attributed to the immunity from liability for user-generated content afforded to social media platforms — and other Internet-enabled services such as discussion boards, review and auction sites, and commentary sections — by Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act. Host take-down or retention of undesirable or controversial content by “interactive computer services,” in the Act’s words, can be contentious, biased, or mistaken. But Section 230 does not require neutrality in the treatment of user-generated content in exchange for immunity. In fact, Sec. 230 explicitly protects non-neutrality, albeit exercised in “good faith.” Section 230’s broad liability protection represented an acceleration of a decades-long trend in courts narrowing liability for publishers, republishers, and distributors. It is the case that changes have been made to Section 230, such as with respect to sex trafficking, but deeper, riskier change is in the air today, advocated for by both Republicans and Democrats. It is possible that some content removals may happen in bad faith, or that companies violate their own terms of service, but addressing those on a case-by-case basis would be a more fruitful approach. Section 230 notwithstanding, laws addressing misrepresentation or deceptive business practices already impose legal discipline on companies. Regime-changing regulation of dominant tech firms — whether via imposing online sales taxes, privacy mandates, or speech codes — is likely not to discipline them, but to make them stronger and more impervious to displacement by emerging competitors. The vast energy expended on accusing purveyors of information, either on mainstream or social media, of bias or of inadequate removal of harmful content should be redirected toward the development of tools that empower users to better customize the content they choose to access. Existing social media firms want rules they can live with — which translates into rules that future social networks cannot live with. Government cannot create new competitors, but it can prevent their emergence by imposing barriers to market entry. At risk in the regulatory fervor, too, is the right of political — as opposed to commercial — anonymity online. Government has a duty to protect dissent, not regulate it, but a casualty of regulation would appear to be future dissident platforms. The Section 230 special immunity must remain intact for others beyond today's slate of big tech players, lest Congress turn social media’s economic power into genuine coercive political power. Competing biases are preferable to pretended objectivity. Given that reality, Congress should acknowledge the inevitable presence of bias, protect competition in speech, and defend the conditions that would allow future platforms and protocols to emerge in service of the public. The priority is not that Facebook or Google or any other platform should remain politically neutral, but that citizens remain free to choose alternatives that might emerge and grow with the same Section 230 exemptions from which the modern online giants have long benefited. Policy makers must avoid creating an environment in which Internet giants benefit from protective regulation that prevents the emergence of new competitors in the decentralized infrastructure of the marketplace of ideas.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

August 5, 2020 | Permalink

Friday, July 31, 2020

Baade on Not Calling a Spade a Shovel: Crucial Subtleties in the Definition of Fake News and Disinformation @B_Baade @FU_Berlin

Björnstjern Baade, Freie Universität Berlin, has published Don’t Call a Spade a Shovel: Crucial Subtleties in the Definition of Fake News and Disinformation, published on Verfassungsblog, April 14, 2020. Here is the abstract.

There is considerable agreement that false as well as distorted (or misleading) statements can be 'fake news' or 'disinformation'. What is lacking, to my mind, is an awareness that the difference between these two varieties is critical. European human rights law requires the distinction between false and distorted statements. False statements may, in principle, be regulated, also in a repressive manner; distorted statements generally may not. Non-legal efforts to counter fake news or disinformation, e.g. fact-checking, are likewise harmed by disregarding the difference between false and distorted statements.

Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

July 31, 2020 | Permalink

Dahl on Intellectual Property: Ownership and Protection in a University Setting @PennLaw

Cynthia Dahl, University of Pennsylvania Law School, is publishing Intellectual Property: Ownership and Protection in a University Setting in In Academic Entrepreneurship for Medical and Health Scientists (Nalaka Gooneratne, Rachel McGarrigle & Flaura Winston eds., 2019).

Before an academic entrepreneur may protect or commercialize an invention, they must understand if they own the rights to it. This short chapter helps the inventor to consider the various scenarios that occur in a university setting. It advises the inventor how to seek a waiver from the university if they believe they are the true owner of the invention. If the facts indicate that the invention should be owned by the university, the chapter also discusses how a university decides to formally protect the invention through patent or copyright. Finally, the chapter advises the inventor how to stay involved in the patenting process, even if the university is the official owner of the rights, in order to build strong protection over the invention against any later infringement.

Download the essay from SSRN at the link.

July 31, 2020 | Permalink

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Belavusau on The Rise of Memory Laws in Poland: An Adequate Tool to Counter Historical Disinformation? @Ulad_Belavusau

Uladzislau Belavusau, T. M. C. Asser Institute, University of Amsterdam; University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley Center on Comparative Equality & Anti-Discrimination Law, has published The Rise of Memory Laws in Poland: An Adequate Tool to Counter Historical Disinformation? at 29 Security and Human Rights 36 (2019). Here is the abstract.

This article focuses on the growing body of Polish memory laws, including the 2016 ‘Street De-Communization’ Law and the 2018 Law on historical expression that introduced changes to the Act of the Polish Institute of National Remembrance. The analysis zooms in on, in particular, the often-overlooked component of the 2018 Law that requires the investigation of historical crimes of ‘Ukrainian nationalists’, as well as the wider context of ‘memory wars’ through memory laws in Central and Eastern Europe. The examination concludes that there is a discrepancy between the rationale to adopt this legislation in Poland, namely to counteract historical disinformation, and the legal solutions contained in the 2018 Law.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

July 29, 2020 | Permalink

Kende on Social Media, the First Amendment, and Democratic Dysfunction in the Trump Era @DrakeLawSchool

Mark Kende, Drake University Law School, has published Social Media, the First Amendment, and Democratic Dysfunction in the Trump Era at 68 Drake Law Review 273 (2020). Here is the abstract.

In the fall of 2019, the congressionally endowed Drake Constitutional Law Center held a symposium on the book, Democracy and Dysfunction, authored by University of Texas law professor Sandy Levinson and Yale law professor Jack Balkin. Several scholars offered commentary on the book. This Article focuses on how the Internet is not what it used to be. The Internet is now a major reason why the U.S. political system has broken down. While several other books have made this argument at length, this Article synthesizes these viewpoints in a concise and useful manner. In 1997, the U.S. Supreme Court treated Internet 1.0 as a sacrosanct technology. The Internet has changed dramatically since then with Facebook, Google, and Amazon becoming among the world’s most dominant companies and social media platforms taking charge. Yet the Court has still provided these companies with the utmost protection. Unfortunately, Internet 2.0 contains encrypted websites allowing dangerous collaborations, salacious materials, a Dark Web, and even postings designed to sabotage elections. It is no accident that the Russians succeeded at influencing the 2016 U.S. presidential election. People’s privacy is also being invaded. And President Donald Trump tweets messages with racist, sexist, and otherwise inflammatory elements on social media. This Article shows how the poisonous social media mentioned above and the absence of useful restrictions have caused political dysfunction. The Article also shows how several often-praised First Amendment cases have contributed to these problems, as have the imprecise and detrimental algorithms employed by these companies. Moreover, the Article asserts that the provisions of 42 U.S.C. § 230 could be used by these private entities to support cleansing efforts that are necessary and thereby avoid government controls.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

July 29, 2020 | Permalink

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Judge Deems BOP Decision To Return Michael Cohen To Prison "Retaliatory," Orders Him Released To Home Confinement

Judge Alvin Hellerstein has ordered former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen released from prison, ruling that the Bureau of Prisons decision to return Mr. Cohen to detention was "retaliatory" because he plans to release a book about Mr. Trump. Mr. Cohen had refused to sign an agreement in which he agreed not to publish the book in order to continue his sentence at home. Said the judge, "“I’ve never seen such a clause, in 21 years in being a judge and sentencing people." He continued, "How can I take any other inference but that it was retaliatory?" Mr. Cohen will serve the rest of his term in home confinement. More here from CNBC. 

July 23, 2020 | Permalink

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Applications Open For UVA Legal Fellowship, First Amendment Clinic, University of Virginia School of Law

The First Amendment Clinic at the University of Virginia School of Law, in partnership with the Reporters Committee, is hiring a legal fellow for the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 academic years. The expected start date is August 17, 2020. This is a full-time position based in Charlottesville, VA, for a two-year term (though exceptional candidates who are only available for the 2020-2021 academic year will be considered).

More information about the posting is available here:

July 22, 2020 | Permalink

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Angelo on Krotoszynski's The Disappearing First Amendment

Michael Conklin, Angelo State University, is publishing Disappearing Act: Are Free Speech Rights Decreasing? in the St. Mary's Law Journal for 2020. Here is the abstract.

This is a critical analysis of Ronald J. Krotoszynski, Jr.’s new book, The Disappearing First Amendment. Krotoszynski provides a counter narrative to the claim that modern free speech rights have been on an upward trajectory. Examples provided to support this claim range from valid (e.g., the public forum doctrine reducing access to government property for speech activity) to misguided (e.g., decreased academic freedom). Overall the book is a worthwhile endeavor because the areas of decreasing free speech rights — such as reduced access to government property for speech activity — receive less media attention than areas of increased free speech such as those in Janus and Citizens United.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

July 21, 2020 | Permalink