Unpaid journalists excluded from shield law

Saturday, September 19, 2009

By: Mallory Tandy

On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to exclude all unpaid journalists from having protection under a pending media shield bill. This includes legal protection for journalists who want to protect their confidential sources. What is a journalist? According to Senator Chuck Schumer, a journailist is a salaried employee who works for media organizations such as, magazines, newspapers, wire services and broadcast networks. The article goes on to discuss that bloggers, citizen journalists and student reporters are not the definition of a journalist, therefore, would not be under the protection of the shield law. Some would say this decision is ridiculous, in that most of our news sources are not the definition of journalists. Should news sources, such as bloggers, be excluded from this bill?

Bloggers are a great source for news information, but I wouldn't think of a blogger to be an actual journalist. I am blogging right now but am not a journalist. Student reporters are still students, they can become a journalist after getting a job in the journalism work field. The definition of a journalist is fitting and I feel is fair for the requirements of the media shield bill.


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