On Access by David Snyder

How Trump’s War on Free Speech Threatens the Republic

BY DAVID SNYDER—On May 17, while delivering a graduation speech to cadets at the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut, a scandal-plagued President Donald Trump took the opportunity to complain, yet again, about the news media. No leader in history, he said, has been treated as unfairly as he has been. Shortly thereafter, when the graduates presented Trump with a ceremonial sword, a live mic picked up Homeland Security chief John F. Kelly telling

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Gmail Nation: The Privatization of Public Records and Public Access

By DAVID SNYDER—The California Supreme Court ruled last month that records stored on government officials’ personal email accounts are subject to the California Public Records Act. This answer seems obvious: government officials should not be able to conceal otherwise public records by simply using Gmail. And yet the law has been surprisingly slow to recognize this principle. Private email accounts have been in widespread use for almost two decades now, and we know that for

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Trump By The Numbers: The Best of (New York) Times and the Worst of (New York) Times

BY DAVID SNYDER–Journalism in the age of Trump, as told through some key numbers and a familiar Dickensian device: Story #1 (the best of times) –In the last quarter of 2016, the New York Times had 276,000 new digital subscriptions, the largest three-month jump in six years, and in February the Times exceeded three million paid print and digital subscriptions. –Large newspapers and magazines are reporting similar surges across the board. –Contributions to nonprofit journalism

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The Threat to Free Speech is Real. But It Isn’t Coming From Where You Might Think.

BY DAVID SNYDER–Critics of Donald Trump don’t have far to look for evidence that he is hostile to free speech and a free press. Trump has called for criminal prosecution of those who burn the American flag, has declared a “running war” with the media, and routinely derides the press as uniformly “dishonest” and “disgusting.”   But the most alarming immediate threats to free speech in this new era aren’t coming directly from Trump.  

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Leaks in the Age of Trump–The Coming Flood

BY DAVID SNYDER—Donald Trump is about to control the most powerful political megaphone in the world.  As President, he will be able to move global markets, disrupt alliances, and start new conflicts (petty or grand) with a single Tweet.  If the past is any guide, he will do these things on his own schedule, irrespective of news cycles, press conferences or diplomatic norms.  And he will do them often. There will be no shortage of

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