Posts Tagged ‘Shellee Hale’

The Hale Case: What’s Good for Old-Guard Journalists May Not Be Good for Bloggers

Friday, June 10th, 2011

The Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press has issued a news release about the New Jersey Supreme Court’s decision in Too Much Media v. Hale [pdf of opinion], in which the state’s shield law was held not protect writer Shellee Hale in responding to discovery requests about her sources for allegedly defamatory postings she made on an online message board.

The RCFP piece’s outlook is rosy. New Jersey media lawyer Bruce Rosen is quoted as saying the decision is a “victory for journalists” because, by overturning the intermediate appeals court decision in the case, the burden has been lowered on people seeking to invoke the shield law.

But for those people who care as much about bloggers as old-guard reporters, the takeaway from the decision may be less sanguine.

… Rosen said that individuals who host blogs and view themselves as citizen journalists may face hurdles to invoking the shield law.

“For the general public, [the case] makes it harder for individual bloggers to have automatic protection,” he said.

New Jersey Supreme Court Rules Against Blogger on Shield Law

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

Yesterday the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled in the case of
Too Much Media v. Shellee Hale, in which a blogger sought to use the state’s reporter shield law to enable her to refuse to reveal the source of information she posted on an internet message board.

New Jersey’s high court handed Hale a loss. The opinion has been posted by the court. The court was unanimous.

Background on the lower court decision, which also went against the Hale: