Newsgathering

Strong FOI Laws Expose More Than Just A Governor’s Diet

Perhaps it’s the nightly lobster tails and whoopie pies. Or maybe it’s the Pumpkinhead Ale. Whatever it is that graces his dinner table, Maine Gov.

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Health Reporters Unite! How One Doctor's Complaint Turned a Public Database Private

Kansas City Star reporter Alan Bavley had a hunch. After years of investigating the health care industry, Bavley began to suspect that state medical boards did not adequately discipline doctors who committed malpractice. Physicians battling substance abuse, for example, were punished far more harshly.

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Tell Us, Judge Posner, Who Watches the Watchmen?

In what is now their widely publicized exchange, U

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Righthaven's Copyright Trolling is a Bankrupt Idea

It’s been several months since we last checked up on Righthaven.  How is everybody’s favorite copyright troll doing?

Well, they might be going bankrupt:

The Las Vegas copyright-trolling firm Righthaven told a Nevada federal judge Friday [September 9, 2011] it might file for bankruptcy protection, or cease operations altogether.

To prevent that, Righthaven is asking U.S. District Judge Philip Pro to stay his decision requiring Righthaven pay $34,000 in legal fees to an online commenter it wrongly sued for infringement.

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A Victory for Recording in Public!

My apologies to Justin Silverman for bumping the second half of his excellent blog post about the BART phone blackout with this breaking news -- I urge you to read Justin's posts as well. 

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Newsgathering Law: A Guide for Reporting

I'm excited to announce the latest installment in a series of legal modules we are publishing in conjunction with Poynter's News University.

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Second Circuit Rules: "Hot News" Claims Preempted

In a narrow, fact-bound decision, the Second Circuit today held that a group of investment firms' claims against a news-aggregation company were preempted by federal copyright law. (PDF of the opinion here.) The court stopped well short of reaching any larger 1st Amendment issues, however.

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Announcing OpenCourt

It is a fundamental principle of the United States legal system that courts should be open to the public.  This principle is widely regarded as more aspirational than factual, because of numerous practical barriers to courtroom access -- not the least of which is that most of us do not have the time or ability to travel to the court to witness proceedings in person.  While the news media report on judicial proceedings,

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