Matching Items (13)

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FOIA: The Lock and Key to Government Records

Description

The Freedom of Information Act (1966), an amendment altering Section Three of the Administrative Procedure Act (1964), outlines the rules and regulations for United States citizens to obtain federal government

The Freedom of Information Act (1966), an amendment altering Section Three of the Administrative Procedure Act (1964), outlines the rules and regulations for United States citizens to obtain federal government records. The act, written with the guidance of journalists, was created for all members of the public, but with the intent that the press would be the primary users of the legislation. The authors of the act believed the press would utilize FOIA to enhance its ability to accomplish its duty of keeping the public informed. Now, 51 years after the act was passed into law, critics say FOIA has not satisfactorily allowed the press or the public in general to inform and be informed. Issues with demand rates, unorganized systems and subjective interpretations of the act have combined to lock information from public access through an act that was intended to be the key to it. The data from annual federal agency FOIA reports to the attorney general from 2008 to 2015 have indicated that, in multiple metrics, FOIA has increasingly struggled to fulfill and often has failed to provide records to requesting parties. These trends have inspired a discussion among journalists and right-to-information advocates about how to best resolve the issues that have contributed to them. Proposed solutions range from adjustments to requesters' approaches to the act, amendments to the act and even abandoning the act entirely in favor of constructing a new law.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

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Reed v. Town of Gilbert: A Court United, a Court Divided

Description

The 2015 Supreme Court case, Reed v. Town of Gilbert, is unusual. While it was unanimously decided in a 9-0 opinion, the majority opinion created a lot of divisiveness within

The 2015 Supreme Court case, Reed v. Town of Gilbert, is unusual. While it was unanimously decided in a 9-0 opinion, the majority opinion created a lot of divisiveness within the Court. This thesis examines how a court that unanimously decided on the outcome of the case contains concurring opinions that so strongly disagree with the specifics put forth in the Opinion of the Court, and what implications that might have on future content discrimination laws. Such implications include whether the Court will take a more functional or literal approach to strict scrutiny examination and content regulation.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

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Zero to Tolerant

Description

Academic integrity policies coded specifically for journalism schools or departments are devised for the purpose of fostering a realistic, informative learning environment. Plagiarism and fabrication are two of the most

Academic integrity policies coded specifically for journalism schools or departments are devised for the purpose of fostering a realistic, informative learning environment. Plagiarism and fabrication are two of the most egregious errors of judgment a journalist can commit, and journalism schools and departments address these errors through their academic integrity policies. Some schools take a zero-tolerance approach, often expelling the student after the first or second violation, while other schools take a tolerant approach, in which a student is permitted at least three violations before suspension is considered. In a time where plagiarizing and fabricating stories has never been easier to commit and never easier to catch, students must be prepared to understand plagiarism and fabrication with multimedia elements, such as video, audio, and photos. In this project, journalism academic integrity codes were gathered from across the U.S. and designated to a zero-tolerance, semi-tolerant or tolerant category the researcher designed in order to determine what is preparing students most for the real journalism world, and to suggest how some policies could improve themselves.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

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Information Comprehension and Retention in the Digital Age

Description

This study looked at college-age students' ability to comprehend and retain information learned from news articles depending on what platform they read from. Fifteen participants read three local New York

This study looked at college-age students' ability to comprehend and retain information learned from news articles depending on what platform they read from. Fifteen participants read three local New York Times articles on each of the platforms provided: iPad, laptop, and paper. They took one test immediately after to test comprehension and another two weeks later to test their retention. Participants were also asked if they found the articles interesting, enjoyable, clear, etc. Results showed that participants' views on each format had little, if any, affect on their number of correct responses. The most consistent results on the participants' perceptions of the formats came from the laptop and paper, whereas the iPad received a bimodal pattern of responses. Participants were also asked to share their news habits while taking the test by selecting how frequently they gain news from various sources such as social media or television. These habits also seemed to have very little effect on their scores.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014-05

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The Online Misinformation Dilemma: "The Remedy To Be Applied Is More Speech"

Description

Americans today face an age of information overload. With the evolution of Media 3.0, the internet, and the rise of Media 3.5—i.e., social media—relatively new communication technologies present pressing challenges

Americans today face an age of information overload. With the evolution of Media 3.0, the internet, and the rise of Media 3.5—i.e., social media—relatively new communication technologies present pressing challenges for the First Amendment in American society. Twentieth century law defined freedom of expression, but in an information-limited world. By contrast, the twenty-first century is seeing the emergence of a world that is overloaded with information, largely shaped by an “unintentional press”—social media. Americans today rely on just a small concentration of private technology powerhouses exercising both economic and social influence over American society. This raises questions about censorship, access, and misinformation. While the First Amendment protects speech from government censorship only, First Amendment ideology is largely ingrained across American culture, including on social media. Technological advances arguably have made entry into the marketplace of ideas—a fundamental First Amendment doctrine—more accessible, but also more problematic for the average American, increasing his/her potential exposure to misinformation. <br/><br/>This thesis uses political and judicial frameworks to evaluate modern misinformation trends, social media platforms and current misinformation efforts, against the background of two misinformation accelerants in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic and U.S. presidential election. Throughout history, times of hardship and intense fear have contributed to the shaping of First Amendment jurisprudence. Thus, this thesis looks at how fear can intensify the spread of misinformation and influence free speech values. Extensive research was conducted to provide the historical context behind relevant modern literature. This thesis then concludes with three solutions to misinformation that are supported by critical American free speech theory.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2021-05

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Information Comprehension and Retention in the Digital Age

Description

This study looked at college-age students' ability to comprehend and retain information learned from news articles depending on what platform they read from. Fifteen participants read three local New York

This study looked at college-age students' ability to comprehend and retain information learned from news articles depending on what platform they read from. Fifteen participants read three local New York Times articles on each of the platforms provided: iPad, laptop, and paper. They took one test immediately after to test comprehension and another two weeks later to test their retention. Participants were also asked if they found the articles interesting, enjoyable, clear, etc. Results showed that participants' views on each format had little, if any, affect on their number of correct responses. The most consistent results on the participants' perceptions of the formats came from the laptop and paper, whereas the iPad received a bimodal pattern of responses. Participants were also asked to share their news habits while taking the test by selecting how frequently they gain news from various sources such as social media or television. These habits also seemed to have very little effect on their scores.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014-05

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Jefferson, The First Amendment and the Predicament of Misinformation

Description

America has been widely considered a great democratic experiment, which is a characterization attributed to Thomas Jefferson. An experiment can be designed to use trial-and-error methods to find a certain

America has been widely considered a great democratic experiment, which is a characterization attributed to Thomas Jefferson. An experiment can be designed to use trial-and-error methods to find a certain outcome. While not a conscious effort, the United States has experienced a trial-and-error experimental process in developing legislation that will restrict dangerous misinformation without violating the speech and press clauses of the First Amendment. In several of his personal writings and official speeches, Jefferson advised against additional government intervention with regard to filtering true and false information published by the press or distributed by citizens. His argument is a guiding theme throughout this thesis, which explores that experimental process and its relation to contemporary efforts to address and prevent future phenomena like the fake news outbreak of 2016.
This thesis utilizes an examination of examples of laws designed to control misinformation, past and present, then using those examples to provide context to both arguments in favor of and opposing new misinformation laws. Extensive archival research was conducted to ensure that accurate historical reflection could be included in offering information about historical examples, as well as through application of relevant literature. The possible effects on the electorate and the practices of the press by those laws of the past and potential proposals for new legislation are also discussed in an effort to provide further context to, and support for, the conclusions reached. Those conclusions include that additional regulation is necessary to discourage the creation and distribution of fake news and misinformation in order to protect the public from the violence or imminent unlawful action they may cause.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2019-05

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The Jodi Arias Trial: Media Involvement and Court Response

Description

There has long been conflict between the First and Sixth Amendments, particularly press freedoms and the right of a defendant to have a fair trial. This thesis expands on this

There has long been conflict between the First and Sixth Amendments, particularly press freedoms and the right of a defendant to have a fair trial. This thesis expands on this conflict, and potential solutions, by looking at the 2013 trial of Jodi Arias. It further elaborates on what responsibilities the courts, and the media, have in protecting a defendant’s right to an impartial jury. The first section of this thesis addresses conflict between the First and Sixth Amendments, the ways that the justice system works to resolve these conflicts, and similar high-profile cases demonstrating the conflict. The second part of this thesis explains the complex events of both the trial and the sentencing retrial. Next, media coverage of the trial will be compared with how the presiding judge attempted to protect Arias’ rights. By the end of this thesis, readers will be able to understand the evolution of the First and Sixth Amendments, how the justice system reconciles differences between the two and how coverage shifted throughout the trial. Finally, readers will be able to see how saturated media coverage impacted Arias’ right to a fair trial, and what this means for high profile criminal cases in the future. This thesis makes recommendations both for the justice system and for media organizations, on how to prevent similar issues seen in the Arias trial from occurring in future trials. The hope is that through an analysis of the Arias trial, and the recommendations made at the conclusion of the thesis, judges and media organizations will be able to work together to better protect both the First and Sixth Amendments to the best of their ability.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2019-05

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Matal v. Tam: A Historical Perspective on Hate Speech, Its Protection and Its Regulation

Description

There are certain clear-cut instances where speech is used only to harm, where the context of the situation does not affect or alter the meaning. These instances, however, are rare.

There are certain clear-cut instances where speech is used only to harm, where the context of the situation does not affect or alter the meaning. These instances, however, are rare. The issue presented in Matal v. Tam (2017) highlights the government’s inability to, and difficulty in, attempting to prohibit assumed offensive content. This thesis argues that even in the rare and overt instances, the government is required to abstain from regulating hate speech, and that the government will not be able to successfully adopt advocate proposed hate-speech regulations. This thesis embraces the concept of precedent as the most binding force in First Amendment questions. It also begins argumentation at the most important era of First Amendment issues, and then analyzes numerous cases spanning nearly one hundred years. Utilizing case rulings, this thesis examines the American social context, as well as academic and historical writings, throughout the past century. Ultimately, this thesis finds that the decision in Matal was not surprising, and that it supports a contemporary First Amendment jurisprudence that believes in a strong divide between the government and private speech. The implications of Matal have been almost immediate, with several lawsuits being decided or brought to court based on the precedent. The decision implies that hate-speech regulations, already given little credence, will share a similar outcome to the law in Matal.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2019-05

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Intellectual property is not property: copyright and the culture of owning a myth

Description

The purpose of this study is to explore the shifting cultural norms of copyright law, and that concept’s impact on the performance and practice of artists producing original works of

The purpose of this study is to explore the shifting cultural norms of copyright law, and that concept’s impact on the performance and practice of artists producing original works of authorship. Although related concepts predate it, and today it exists as a subset of a broader category known as intellectual property, the purpose of copyright beginning with the United States Constitution was to allow for a temporary economic monopoly to an author of a fixed creative work. This monopoly was meant to incentivize authors to contribute to the public good with works that promote progress in science and art. However, increases over time in the scope and duration of copyright terms grant broader protections and controls for copyright owners today, while advances in technology have provided the public with the potential for near-limitless low-cost access to information. This creates a conflict between proprietary interest in creative works and the public’s right and ability to access and build on those works. The history of copyright law in America is rife with efforts to balance these competing interests.

The methodology for this study consisted of flexible strategies for collecting and analyzing data, primarily elite, semi-structured interviews with professional artists, attorneys, and others who engage with the cultural and legal norms of intellectual property regimes on a regular basis. Constant comparative analysis was used to maintain an emic perspective, prioritizing the subjective experience of individuals interviewed for this research project. Additional methods for qualitative analysis were also employed here to code and categorize gathered data, including the use of RQDA, a software package for Qualitative Data Analysis that runs within the R statistical software program. Various patterns and behaviors relevant to intellectual property reforms as they relate to artist practices were discussed in detail following the analysis of findings, in an effort to describe how cultural norms of copyright intersect with the creation of original works of authorship, and towards the development of the theory that the semiotic sign systems subject to intellectual property laws are not themselves forms of real property, as they do not meet the categorical requirements of scarce resources.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018