Curent issues

On may 21,2001- the supreme court ruled in a case involving the rights of journalists against the personal rights to privacy, that news organizations cannot be punished for broadcasting information that was passed to them unlawfully.
The case began in in 1993, when a conversation between two teacher union officials-Gloria Barnicki and Anthony F. Kane Jr- was intercepted and recorded by an unknown source. One of the officials was using a car phone during the conversation, the union officials made derogatory remarks about some school board members. The tape was sent to a talk show host, who played the tape over and over for his listeners. As a result of the scandal, the two union officials, sued the stations that carried the broadcast. However, the federal district court in Penn, allowed the suit, but the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit ruled otherwise, holding that the constitution did not permit liability for disclosing information of "public significance" when the defendant played no role in the interception.
In this case, a couple of principles apply, thefirst being civil liberties. The two board members appealed to the court with the argument that their right to privacy was being violated. On the other side, there was the radio stations which had the freedom of the press in their side. Last but not least, the judiciary came to play, with the involvement of the federal court as well as the Supreme court.
Civil liberties, are rights of the people protected by the First Amendment of the Constitution. "Publication of truthful information concerning the private life of a person that would be both highly offensive to a reasonable person and not of legitimate public concern is an invasion of privacy. Liability is often determined by how the information was obtained and it's newsworthiness" (The First Amendment. H). According to the case being dis


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