Monday, January 25, 2016

Landmark Court Ruling ALLOWS for ALL Bloggers to be protected by the First Amendment EQUAL to ALL Traditional Journalists

A Major WIN for ALL Bloggers, Especially those Exposing Corruption, Wrong Doing or Unethical actions by the Judicial System.

" Jim Rosenfeld, Ambika K. Doran and Jeremy A. Chase, attorneys with the firm Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, called the decision “a major win for individuals who blog, share, tweet, and otherwise publish their views online.” 

The attorneys explained that the panel’s language provided First Amendment protections to all speakers regardless of affiliation with institutional media.

As a result, the attorneys said, “an individual blogger, website operator or social media users speaking publicly on the Internet enjoy the same First Amendment protections from defamation claims as traditional media publishers.”


" “Respecting speech means evaluating it on its merits, instead of assuming that it has none,” he said." ~  Digital Media Law Project director Jeff Hermes


"Did you know that if you're a blogger and someone tries chill your speech with defamation law, your rights are protected by the First Amendment? "

"Thus begins our story of Ms. Crystal Cox, Internet blogger who posted articles on her now defunct blog, accusing two bankruptcy officers "of fraud, corruption, money-laundering, and other illegal activities in connection with the Summit bankruptcy." At the district court level, Cox actually did well for representing herself. All but one of her blog posts in contention were found to be protected as they merely contained hyperbolic speech. But the one article at issue here was different, as it "fairly specific allegations[that] a reasonable reader could understand . . . to imply a provable fact assertion" about the officer's alleged failure to pay taxes. The story that follows is familiar - a demand to remove the articles was refused by Cox and litigation ensued in Obsidian Financial Group v. Cox."


Several First Amendment advocates and advocacy organizations praised the Ninth Circuit’s ruling. UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh, who represented Cox during the appeals process, told Associated Press reporter Jeff Barnard for a Jan. 17, 2014 article that the decision “makes clear that bloggers have the same First Amendment rights as professional journalists.” 


"Gregg Leslie, the legal defense director for the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press (RCFP), said the ruling confirmed the fact that Gertz was “not a special right to the news media.” Rather, it applied to everyone. “So it’s a good thing for bloggers and citizen journalists and others,”

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