Tom Rants

Yes, Virginia, there is a St. Valentine.

Tom Rants Default Is this just sloppiness on the part of the legal profession?

Is this just sloppiness on the part of the legal profession?

I commented earlier on the Apple lawyer who switched mid-sentence from dealing with issues of Shield Laws, which apply to the press, to saying that “free speech protection applied only to legitimate members of the press.” Today Eugene Volokh has a post on the application of “optional speech protections” to the internet that appears to take the same approach in equating free speech and free press, though at least he doesn’t take the tack of explicitly saying that Freedom of Speech is reserved to the Press.

I had always understood the two things to be distinct. A reading of the First Amendment, where they are each mentioned seems to imply that the Framers thought they were also. Certainly they’re related, and I understand that the advent of broadcast media which don’t actually print anything has blurred the lines, but is this an epidemic of sloppiness by the legal profession or at some point has it actually been ruled that freedom of speech is reserved to the members of the press (who already enjoy a separate Constitutional protection) and I just missed it?

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