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FAC partners with Online News Association to assist digital journalists

The First Amendment Coalition is delighted to announce a partnership with the Online News Association to provide ONA members—-digital journalists working primarily for digital media platforms—with legal help on First Amendment and other media law matters through FAC’s Legal Hotline service. The Legal Hotline is a legal consultation service available on FAC’s website. Users submit […]

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Super Bowl Score: Cop Overtime $6.3 Million, Taxpayers 0

Super Bowl Score: Cop Overtime $6.3 Million, Taxpayers 0

By Karl Olson — The big winners of Super Bowl 50 were not just the Denver Broncos, they were San Francisco cops who racked up over $6.3 million in overtime while The City hosted “Super Bowl City.” And the big losers were not just the Carolina Panthers, they were San Francisco taxpayers, whose elected representatives threw […]

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Latest FAC suit secures release of Sonoma County Superbowl Contract

FAC’s latest lawsuit—a Public Records Act suit against Sonoma County—-has ended successfully, with the county disclosing a complete, unredacted copy of a contract to promote tourism in connection with the Super Bowl. In denying PRA requests for the contract submitted by local news media and FAC, the county said the contract was exempt because it […]

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Help us meet the Hearst 50K Challenge by May 31!

Will Hearst Gives 50K Matching Gift. Help us Reach the Hearst Challenge by May 31

We are delighted to report that William R. Hearst III has pledged $50,000 to launch FAC’s Spring 2016 Campaign. Will is generously matching all contributions that FAC receives through May 2016, up to a total of $50,000. Please contribute today and help us meet the Will Hearst Challenge. Your support makes it possible for FAC […]

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Craig Newmark, founder

Craigslist founder Craig Newmark joins FAC Advisory Board

We are very pleased to announce that Craig Newmark has joined FAC’s Advisory Board. Mr. Newmark is the founder of, the extraordinarily successful and pioneering classified advertising site. Having retired from active management, he now focuses his energy and resources on philanthropic endeavors. In 2011 he launched craigconnects as a platform to support organizations involved in work for […]

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The Monterey County Weekly's CEO Bradley Zeve, FAC Executive Director Peter Scheer, Staff Writer Mary Rubin, Editor Mary Duan, Publisher Erik Cushman and Attorney Roger Myers, Bryan Cave, LLP, who represented the MCWeekly in unsealing Diocese records.

FAC Free Speech & Open Government Award winners honored at Cal Press Foundation 138th Annual Dinner Banquet

The 2015 recipients of the Free Speech & Open Government Award competition were honored Thursday, December 3 at the California Press Foundation’s 138th Annual Meeting in San Francisco. The two winners of this year’s awards used different methods to accomplish their goals ­­one upholding the finest traditions of community journalism and the other demonstrating the effectiveness of […]

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Vote No on Prop E

FAC urges ‘NO’ vote on San Francisco’s Prop E

The First Amendment Coalition opposes Proposition E, a November-election ballot measure about public access to San Francisco city Board and Commission meetings. FAC supports reforms that make San Francisco’s political process more transparent and more open to voices that are not currently heard, and FAC supports the use of technology to make government more accountable […]

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FAC's FOI Award

Call for nominations 2015 FAC FOI Award

The First Amendment Coalition is soliciting nominees for the FAC Free Speech & Open Government Award, given each year for performance of exemplary work in the arena of open government. Qualifications for the award are outstanding accomplishment, service or other contributions to “the people’s right to know” about government. The winner, or winners, could be a journalist, […]

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Critic of Inglewood mayor defeats censorship-by-copyright

A few weeks ago we wrote about the thin-skinned mayor of Inglewood who, stung by criticism from a local citizen, went to court to silence him. Oblivious to first amendment protections for free speech, the mayor and his lawyers claimed the critic’s use of clips from videos of city council meetings infringed Inglewood’s copyright. Now […]

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Watch Pulling Back the Blue Curtain

Watch Now! FAC & KPCC’s Pulling Back the Blue Curtain: When should we have access to police records?

You might want to put on welding goggles and spf 50 sunscreen because more than a few sparks fly when FAC’s Peter Scheer and KPCC’s Frank Stoltze ask the panel of law-enforcement-access experts: “How much access to police records is warranted; how much is too much?  KPCC’s crime and public safety correspondent Frank Stoltze moderated the lively, sometimes heated, discussion among […]

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