MEDIA LAW IN THE DIGITAL AGE
The Rules Have Changed -- Again

Kennesaw State University
Kennesaw, Georgia
October 22, 2011

Co-produced by the Citizen Media Law Project at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet & Society and Kennesaw State's Center for Sustainable Journalism, Media Law in the Digital Age is a must-attend event for anyone who publishes online content, works in digital media, or studies the way in which technology has influenced journalism and law.

Whether you are blogger, social media strategist, journalist, or media attorney, you know that the law governing digital media is constantly changing. The best way to protect your organization, your clients or yourself is to know what the rules are today.

Join experts in the field of law, digital media, journalism and academia as they lead panel sessions in an intensive day-long conference.

Registration is open to the public.

Date:   Saturday, October 22, 2011
Time:    Sign-in opens at 8 a.m.; sessions to run 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (including a networking lunch)
Location:   Kennesaw State University, Social Sciences Building (directions, map)
Cost:   $69
Transportation:   Hotel and transportation information is available here

Conference Chairs (bios available here):
Dr. Joshua Azriel, Assistant Professor, Kennesaw State University
Carolyn Carlson, Assistant Professor, Kennesaw State University
Jeffrey Hermes, Director, Citizen Media Law Project, Berkman Center, Harvard
Geanne Rosenberg, Director, Harnisch Collaborative Future of Journalism Projects
Leonard Witt, Executive Director, Center for Sustainable Journalism

Register for this event on the Kennesaw State University Website

More information about the conference, including confirmed speakers,
is available on the main Conference Website



SCHEDULE
(Click on panel names for descriptions)

Time

Room SO1019

 Room SO1020

 Room SO1022

9:00am - 10:00am

 Plenary: The Aftermath of WikiLeaks (Room SO1019)

10:15am - 11:45am

Online Community Building and Management

Access to Government Information in the Digital Age

Apps & Wireless: New Platforms for Online Content Providers and Journalists

12:00noon - 1:30pm

 Networking Lunch

1:45pm - 3:15pm

Copyright: Using the Work of Others and Licensing Your Own Work


Legal Issues for Entrepreneurs: Business Law Basics for Independent News Organizations

Social Media and Its Legal Implications: Where Your Personal Life Meets Journalism

3:30pm - 5:00pm

Is Recording in Public a Crime?  Mobile Devices and Newsgathering


Libel Law: Minimizing the Risks of Publishing Online

Generating Revenue: Advertising, Branding and Buzz

 


PANEL DESCRIPTIONS
(panelists are still being added, so check back frequently)

Opening Remarks and Plenary Session: The Aftermath of WikiLeaks

Moderator:  Lucy Dalglish, Executive Director, Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press

Confirmed Panelists:

David McCraw, Vice President and Assistant General Counsel, The New York Times Company

Has WikiLeaks had a damaging effect on freedom of information and thus on our democracy? Are journalists and media organizations doing enough to ensure that the government and other power brokers do not undermine the freedom of the press in response to these events? To what extent has WikiLeaks highlighted important areas in which even greater security for government secrets is required?

David McCraw helped guide the New York Times newsroom in publishing the confidential cables leaked by WikiLeaks.  Now he fears that the government is drawing the wrong conclusions from these events, and believes that government secrets, not disclosure of those secrets, are the greater threat to democracy.

Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal has started its own crowdsourcing site, SafeHouse.  How has WikiLeaks changed the way in which our society looks at journalists, and how journalists look at themselves?

 * * *

Access to Government Information in the Digital Age

Moderator:  Carolyn Carlson, Assistant Professor of Journalism and Citizen Media, Kennesaw State University

Confirmed Panelists:

Lucy Dalglish, Executive Director, Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press

The panel will discuss access to government through open meeting laws, FOIA and state public records laws, First Amendment and common law rights of access to judicial proceedings, and rules governing cameras in the courtroom.

  • As a journalist, what rights do you have to obtain records and attend governmental proceedings?
  • What can you do if a judge decides to close a courtroom?
  • Do you need permission to record audio or video?

The panel will also discuss ways in which the easy dissemination of content on the internet has raised concerns among judges and government officials about disclosure of information.

 * * *

Apps and Wireless: New Platforms for Online Content Providers and Journalists

Moderator:  Justin Brown, Assistant Professor of Telecommunications, University of South Florida

Confirmed Panelists:

Robert Bertsche, Prince Lobel Tye LLP
Noah Echols, Digital Media Manager, Center for Sustainable Journalism
Art Neill, Founder/Executive Director, New Media Rights

An Internet website allows you to put the news on a screen in front of your audience at home, at work, or wherever they might open a web browser. With mobile apps and wireless technology, your content accompanies your audience with every step they take and is a mere tap of the finger away — and you can even tailor your content based upon your reader’s specific location. But do you have the rights necessary to transfer your content to this new platform?

  • What exactly is geolocation?
  • What legal risks accompany the use of geolocation data for content tailoring?

This session will discuss these and other issues arising from the use of mobile technology to distribute content and interact with users.

 * * *

Online Community Building and Management

Moderator:  David Ardia, Assistant Professor of Law, University of North Carolina

Confirmed Panelists:

Lesli Gaither, Dow Lohnes, PLLC
C. Amanda Martin, Stevens Martin Vaughn & Tadych, PLLC/General Counsel, North Carolina Press Association
Vera Haller, Assistant Professor, Baruch College, CUNY
Victor Hernandez, Director of Domestic Newsgathering, CNN

Allowing users to post content to your site and to interact with one another can create an energetic following that will sustain your business model. It can also expose you to a host of legal issues if not managed properly. This session will discuss managing legal risks arising out of user-generated content, including:

  • The safe harbor for website operators under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (including the latest cases)
  • The scope of editorial control that websites can exercise without losing Section 230’s protection
  • The safe harbor of Section 512 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act
  • Compliance with the DMCA’s statutory requirements, including responses to take-down notices and counter-notices
  • Limiting legal exposure from trademark violations in user content
  • Subpoenas for user information

 * * *

Copyright: Using the Work of Others and Licensing Your Own Work

Moderator:  Dale Cohen, Emory University/Associate General Counsel, Media for Cox Enterprises, Inc.

Confirmed Panelists:

Clay Calvert, Director, Marion B. Brechner First Amendment Project, University of Florida
F. Richard Rimer, Troutman Sanders LLP
Deborah Gonzalez, Founder, Law2sm, LLC

Whether you’re a freelancer or an independent online publisher, you’ll want to know the basics of copyright law. This session will discuss the nature of a copyright and the rights that it includes, and identification of the owner of a copyright. It will also answer the following:

  • Do you need a license to use a certain copyrighted work, or can you rely upon the doctrine of fair use or the concept of the “public domain”?
  • How do you license your work and the work of others, including Creative Commons and other share-alike licenses?

This panel will also cover particular concerns for news aggregators and others whose business models depend on third-party content.

 * * *

Social Media and Its Legal Implications: Where Your Personal Life Meets Journalism

Moderator:  Dr. Joshua Azriel, Assistant Professor of Communication, Kennesaw State University

Confirmed Panelists:

Dr. Amy Kristin Sanders, Assistant Professor of Mass Communications and Law, University of Minnesota
Justin Brown, Assistant Professor of Telecommunications, University of South Florida
Josh Levs, CNN

Social media platforms provide online content providers and journalists with a vast array of information on various topics from sources around the world. But like every other newsgathering tool, social media can present legal risks if misused. This panel will guide you around the pitfalls of engaging in social media, including:

  • Claims for invasion of privacy and dissemination of private facts
  • Misrepresentation claims arising out of your interaction with others as a journalist
  • Violations of social media site terms of service
  • The federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act
  • Risks posed by spoofers and impersonators

 * * *

Legal Issues for Entrepreneurs: Business Law Basics for Independent News Organizations

Moderator:  Daniel Shmalo, Managing Partner, 360 Venture Law, LLP

Confirmed Panelists:

Douglas Kenyon, Hunton & Williams LLP
Brett Lockwood, Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP

You may be a seasoned journalist or a first-time blogger, but if publishing online is your business, there are many legal and practical issues to consider. This session will cover the basics of setting up and running an online business, including:

  • Naming your business
  • Choosing between for-profit and non-profit
  • Choosing a business form (including LLCs, L3Cs, and corporations)
  • Freelancer and other content-contributor agreements
  • Record-keeping, taxes and insurance.

 * * *

Libel Law: Minimizing the Risks of Publishing Online

Moderator:  David Ardia, Assistant Professor of Law, University of North Carolina

Confirmed Panelists:

Peter Canfield, Dow Lohnes PLLC
Eric P. Robinson, Deputy Director, Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Courts and Media
C. Amanda Martin, Stevens Martin Vaughn & Tadych, PLLC/General Counsel, North Carolina Press Association
Clay Calvert, Director, Marion B. Brechner First Amendment Project, University of Florida 

Everyone wants to get the story right, but unreliable sources and misleading information can sometimes lead you down the garden path. In this session, media lawyers will discuss the basics of avoiding defamation claims, including the legal definition of libel and privileges for opinion and fair reports of government activity. The panelists will also discuss the red flags that they look for when performing pre-publication review, the advice they give for reporters covering sensitive topics, and best practices for responding to legal threats.

 * * *

Is Recording in Public a Crime?  Mobile Devices and Newsgathering

Moderator:  Jeffrey Hermes, Director, Citizen Media Law Project

Confirmed Panelists:

Valerie Cummings, Assistant Professor of Broadcast Journalism, Howard University
Carlos Miller, Multimedia Journalist and Blogger, Photography is Not a Crime
Mickey H. Osterreicher, General Counsel, National Press Photographers Association

In Massachusetts, a man was arrested for wiretapping after he used his cell phone in broad daylight in a public park to record an arrest, and a woman was arrested on her own property for photographing a car that crashed through her fence. In Miami Beach, police officers pointed their weapons at a man sitting in his car who had just videotaped the officers shooting another man, and seized his camera. The new Illinois Eavesdropping Act prohibits audio recording of others in public without their permission, even if there is nothing secret about the recording and those recorded have no legitimate expectation of privacy.

  • Can the First Amendment possibly allow this?
  • And what does this mean for journalists who try to cover public officials and gather news in public places?

The panel will explore these recent events, including the recent decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in Glik v. Cunniffe, and discuss best practices for responding to such incidents.

* * *

Generating Revenue: Advertising, Branding, and Buzz

Moderator:  Leonard Witt, Executive Director, Center for Sustainable Journalism

Confirmed Panelists:

Mark VanderBroek, Troutman Sanders LLP
Kari L. Moeller, Senior Counsel, Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.
Andrew Christopher, Dow Lohnes PLLC

The biggest question in digital media is how to make money at it. There are a thousand different answers to that question, but all of them are subject to state and federal law. This session will discuss statutory and regulatory regimes for advertising and promotions, including:

  • Use and disclosure of user information for marketing purposes, including behavioral advertising and apps that gather geolocation and other user-specific data
  • Brand management and avoidance of others’ trademarks
  • State and federal restrictions on unfair and deceptive trade practices
  • FTC guidelines on third-party endorsements
  • CAN-SPAM and other statutory marketing rules
  • Other laws governing advertising, contests and promotions.

 


Register for this event