Comments on: When the SEC subpoenas journalists’ sources http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2010/06/23/when-the-sec-subpoenas-journalists-sources/ A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.5 By: HBC http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2010/06/23/when-the-sec-subpoenas-journalists-sources/comment-page-1/#comment-16140 Thu, 24 Jun 2010 19:47:38 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=4404#comment-16140 I suppose if ones definition of acceptable casualty amidst the debilitating real estate bubble were to include the Fourth Estate, a case for imperial cancellation of source confidentiality in journalism might be made.

Otherwise, no matter how loathsome Judith Miller, I think not.

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By: AnonymousChef http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2010/06/23/when-the-sec-subpoenas-journalists-sources/comment-page-1/#comment-16135 Thu, 24 Jun 2010 17:58:20 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=4404#comment-16135 Slowlearner hits it out of the park here.

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By: DanHess http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2010/06/23/when-the-sec-subpoenas-journalists-sources/comment-page-1/#comment-16125 Thu, 24 Jun 2010 02:49:57 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=4404#comment-16125 Thank you, slowlearner for some common sense!

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By: slowlearner http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2010/06/23/when-the-sec-subpoenas-journalists-sources/comment-page-1/#comment-16122 Wed, 23 Jun 2010 23:55:07 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=4404#comment-16122 The analogy with the attorney-client privilege doesn’t really hold up. The law protects the contents of confidential communications between attorneys and clients only so long as both parties keep those communications confidential. Once the communications are disclosed to any third party, the privilege is lost.

You can see that this concept doesn’t really work in the context of a journalist-source relationship. The whole point of a source communicating with a journalist is to disclose the contents of the communications to third parties – journalists are supposed to report the news to the public. So there really isn’t any legal justification for protecting the content of communciations between sources and journalists.

This is not the same as protecting the identity of a confidential source. Once the source of a communciation is known, there isn’t the need to protect the contents of a communication as in an attorney-client relationship. A client needs to discuss legal matters with his attorney shielded from public scrutiny; the client expects that the attorney will not reveal those communications. A source discusses matters of public importance with journalists preciesely in order to have those matters disseminated as far as possible.

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By: DonthelibertDem http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2010/06/23/when-the-sec-subpoenas-journalists-sources/comment-page-1/#comment-16119 Wed, 23 Jun 2010 21:16:53 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=4404#comment-16119 “The Sam Antar subpoena, however, is obviously a fishing expedition: it even includes documents from Antar’s recent divorce.”

If you had to read through endless messages, wouldn’t you enjoy an occasional salacious detail to break up the monotony?

Maybe he can ask John Lurie for help on the fishing front. Here’s a little music they can listen to while they’re working:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QaL4FHY2_ ec

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