1st Amendment News

Workers gain greater protection in bringing complaints to supervisors

In a rare victory for workers, the 2nd Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that  federal labor laws protect employees making complaints to their employer. The ruling came in a case in which a security guard claimed he was punished for telling his boss he had not been paid for several month. (Courthouse News Service, […]

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Press and public gain in quest of information about 2012 police shooting in Pasadena

A California appeals court reversed itself in unsealing a legal brief by the Pasadena Police Officers Association that quoted from a secret report on a 2012 police shooting of a teen-ager Kendrec McDade. The Los Angeles Times had been trying to obtain the brief. McDade’s family and others in the Pasadena community had been highly […]

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Civil liberties groups critical of pending cybersecurity laws

The cybersecurity laws currently in Congress will create a new exemption to the Freedom of Information Act that blocks the public from knowing anything about signs of cyber threats and defensive tactics companies and individuals share with the government. (Politico, April 20, 2015, by Josh Gerstein) The Freedom of the Press Foundation and others signed […]

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New York Times documents lack of transparency in military health system

Military families are discovering that the U.S. military medical system is closed to inquires about botched medical care. Attempts to find out what happened in such cases meet with stock letters of condolence, denials or silence. And workers in the system cannot speak out about problems without suffering penalties. The Pentagon’s chief health official, Dr. […]

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Report criticizes CIA for coverup related to filming of ‘Zero Dark Thirty’

The Project on Government Oversight (POGO) obtained a document allegedly showing that while the CIA was withholding information about the hunt for Osama bin Laden from Congress and the public, they gave secret information to the makers of the film “Zero Dark Thirty”  that told the story of how the U.S. tracked and killed bin […]

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WikiLeaks publishes hacked documents from Sony in searchable format for those who dare

Sony lawyer David Boies warned the media not to publish a WikiLeaks database of internal Sony documents and e-mails obtained after a cyberattack last year. WikiLeak’s Julian Assange claimed that the information should be public because Sony is part of the U.S. military-industrial complex and the documents offer a view of a “large, secretive multinational […]

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Lack of transparency hampers California water conservation

California state law protects the identities of many of the state’s water wasters according to a report by the Center for Investigative Reporting. Katharine Mieszkowski and Lance Williams report that a law passed in 1997 designed to protect high tech residents using excessive amounts of water. The top 100 water users in San Diego consumed […]

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Twitter seeks a more protective balance between free expression and abuse

Twitter chief lawyer Vijaya Gadde announced new steps to protect its users from the posting of non-consensual photos of compromising poses and abusive and threatening comments. “Freedom of expression means little as our underlying philosophy if we continue to allow voices to be silenced because they are afraid to speak up. We need to do […]

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Yelp wins Virginia case to keep its online commentators anonymous

The Virginia Supreme Court avoided a free speech finding in ruling that Yelp could not be forced to reveal the identities of users who posted negative reviews of a carpet-cleaning service. The court ruled narrowly that the carpet company could not subpoena documents from Yelp headquarters in California thus skirting the First Amendment issues in […]

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San Diego lawyer challenges inewsource over allegations

The law firm of  San Diego environmental attorney Cory Briggs subpoenaed inewsource’s Lorie Hearn seeking information on a story about a conflict-of -interest investigation of Briggs. Last week a non-profit associated with Briggs filed a lawsuits against Hearn and inewsource over the lease for office space inewsource has with San Diego State. (inewsource, Alpril 14, […]

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