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Forcing Journalists to Reveal Sources: Expert Available to Speak on Recent Supreme Court Ruling

Released: 3-Jun-2014 2:00 PM EDT
Source Newsroom: Georgia State University
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Gerry Weber, a First Amendment expert and former legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia, is available to discuss the recent Supreme Court ruling rejecting the appeal of James Risen, a New York Times reporter who faces jail for refusing to disclose a confidential source.

Weber, an adjunct faculty member at Georgia State University's College of Law, said:

"The Supreme Court's 1972 decision on the existence of a reporter's privilege has left lower court's scratching their heads and reaching divergent results for the following 30 years. This was a lost opportunity for the Supreme Court to help lower courts determine when and whether reporter's have a privilege not to reveal confidential sources. Journalists too are left wondering whether they can abide by journalistic ethics or whether they must reveal sources to avoid jail."

Weber has litigated against governments in cases striking down numerous laws such as state restrictions on the Internet, and chalked up one of the largest monetary awards in Georgia history -- a $440 million judgment in an international human rights case against a Serbian government torturer.

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