The Perils of Courts’ Defining the News for Journalists

In researching and writing a new piece, I had the great fortune of re-reading a superb article written by Amy Gajda entitled Judging Journalism: The Turn Toward Privacy and Judicial Regulation of the Press,  97 Cal. L. Rev. 1039 (2009).  In it, Gajda explores courts’ growing willingness to recognize privacy claims against the media for unwanted publicity.  As Gajda explains, this has been accomplished in part due to courts’ increasing lack of deference to journalists’ news judgment and willingness to assert their own determinations of the legitimate scope of news coverage.  The Article addresses the nascent resurgence of the publication of private fact torts in the courts and the perils involved in shifting the power to define the news from working journalists and the consuming public to judges and juries.  It is a truly terrific read.

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