Freedom of the Press?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by 5stringJeff, May 25, 2005.

  1. 5stringJeff
    Offline

    5stringJeff Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2003
    Messages:
    9,990
    Thanks Received:
    536
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Puyallup, WA
    Ratings:
    +540
    The Newsweek debacle, not to mention other raTHer disturbing incidents in the media lately, have got me thinking. So here are a couple of questions I've come up with, and I'm interested to hear people's opinions:

    1. Is freedom of the press an absolute right? If not, what restrictions should be placed on the press?

    2. If a false story is published that causes damage, harm, or death (like the Newsweek Koran story), should anyone be held responsible? If so, who? If not, why not?
     
  2. no1tovote4
    Offline

    no1tovote4 VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Messages:
    10,294
    Thanks Received:
    616
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Colorado
    Ratings:
    +616
    1. It is not an absolute right, slander is still against the law and they can be made to pay for the results of incorrect reporting.

    2. A smart trial lawyer would contact the families of the dead from the "Koran Desecration Riots" get them temp visas and get them here then sue the crap out of Newsweek.
     
  3. no1tovote4
    Offline

    no1tovote4 VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Messages:
    10,294
    Thanks Received:
    616
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Colorado
    Ratings:
    +616
    P.S. I also think this is second degree manslaughter and those responsible for reporting the story are directly responsible for the avoidable death of those people.

    If I had a newspaper and "reported" that a "reward" would be paid for the death of one of my enemies. Then suddenly three people converged to do so and get the reward, I would still be held responsible for the murder.
     
  4. Jimmyeatworld
    Offline

    Jimmyeatworld Silver Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2004
    Messages:
    2,239
    Thanks Received:
    223
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    America
    Ratings:
    +223
    Freedom of the press is just that, a freedom, but like many other things some people have buried their common sense under it. There was a time when joarnalists would actually find evidense and make sure a story was accurate before they published it. Now, any Tom, Dick, or Harry comes along with a widl story, tells them they want to remain anonymous, and next week it's on the front page.

    The Newsweek story was technically treason. Yeah, I think something should be done. Freedom of the press doesn't mean you can print or report anything you want, true or not.
     
  5. 5stringJeff
    Offline

    5stringJeff Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2003
    Messages:
    9,990
    Thanks Received:
    536
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Puyallup, WA
    Ratings:
    +540
    Here's my take. Obviously, freedom of the press is not absolute. We have laws against libel. However, with freedom comes responsibility. The press, and those who wish to join "the press," have a responsibility, but I'm not sure how to define that responsibility. To whom are they responsible?

    My take on the Newsweek piece is that the author who wrote the story and the editors that allowed it to go to press should 1) be fired, and 2) charged with some type of libel.
     
  6. ScreamingEagle
    Offline

    ScreamingEagle Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2004
    Messages:
    12,885
    Thanks Received:
    1,609
    Trophy Points:
    245
    Ratings:
    +2,158
    1. Libel is already a restriction on the press. Otherwise it should be free.

    2. Any false story that causes harm should fall under the libel charge. Stories that also contain libelous innuendo should also be prosecuted because, although they may not per se be incorrect they can still cause harm. Also, treasonous stories should be prosecuted.

    Freedom of the press should come only with responsible press coverage.
     
  7. 5stringJeff
    Offline

    5stringJeff Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2003
    Messages:
    9,990
    Thanks Received:
    536
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Puyallup, WA
    Ratings:
    +540
    How would you define that? In other words, would calling Bush a "war criminal" (ala yeula) fit into your definition? What about calling Sen. Byrd "Sheets?" What about Ann Coulter's rants? Or Michael Moore's?
     
  8. no1tovote4
    Offline

    no1tovote4 VIP Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Messages:
    10,294
    Thanks Received:
    616
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Colorado
    Ratings:
    +616

    Each of those is Opinion Journalism, that is different than freedom of the Press, it is Freedom of Speech instead of the Press when people speak their opinion about political figures. Had the story reported the story as opinion rather than fact, there would and could be no libel action taken against them.

    However as I said before, their action directly led to the death of innocents, this is manslaughter. They should be charged and tried for their irresponsible and inaccurate reporting that directly killed people. The magazine should be sued for the libel as well as being directly responsible and sued for the death of those killed in the riots. However none of this action is being taken....
     
  9. ScreamingEagle
    Offline

    ScreamingEagle Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2004
    Messages:
    12,885
    Thanks Received:
    1,609
    Trophy Points:
    245
    Ratings:
    +2,158
    'Scuse me, but Coulter does not "rant".

    Yes, I would consider calling Bush a "war criminal" without proof as libelous.
    During war time, it could also be considered treasonous.

    ps: as No1 said, if such things are in an editorial instead of a press report, then it's OK as it is an opinion piece.
     
  10. archangel
    Online

    archangel Guest

    Ratings:
    +0


    Geez and Jeff told me in other posts that he was a graduate of a Military Academy...West Point...I think...not sounding like it now! :cof:
     

Share This Page