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January 2007

MediaLawLetter April 2007


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Ethics: Provocative Journalism or Birdcage Lining?
The Special Significance Rule 1.2(b) Plays for Media Lawyers


E.D. Va.: Government’s Motion to Limit Access to Classified Evidence in AIPAC Trial Not
Authorized by CIPA and Unconstitutional, Judge Rules
United States v. Rosen


N.D. Cal.: California Court Rules Against Google in Sponsored Links Lawsuit
Finds Trademark “Use” in Keyword Prompted Ads
Google, Inc. v. Am. Blind and Wallpaper Factory


D. Mass.: In First Phase of Libel Retrial State Prosecutor Ruled a Public Official
Case Will Now be Tried Under Actual Malice Standard
Mandel v. Boston Phoenix

Ill. Cir. Ct.: Judge Reduces Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice’s Defamation Award
$7 Million Award Cut to $4 Million
Thomas v. Page

10th Cir.: Tenth Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment for Harper’s and Peter Tunley
Publication of Photograph from Soldier’s Funeral Not Actionable
Showler v. Harper’s Magazine Foundation

N.Y. App.: Verdict Affirmed Against New York Weekly for Political Column on Opinion Page
Newspaper Plans Appeal to Court of Appeals; Media Amicus Support Sought
Mann v. Abel

Pa. C. P.: Court Dismisses Libel Suit Against “DontDateHimGirl” Website
No Jurisdiction Over Florida Defendants
Hollis v. Joseph

S.D.N.Y.: Court Dismisses Declaratory Judgment Suit Over Jamaican Libel Action
Author Sought Declaration That Claim Was Unenforceable in the U.S.
Gunst v. Seaga

Tex. Dist. Ct.: New York Times, WGBH and CBC Win Summary Judgment
Defamation and Business Disparagement Claims Over Worker Safety Series
Adams v. The New York Times Company

C.D. Ill.: Summary Judgment for Author Who Described Fall Out With Former Ally
No Evidence That Defendant Doubted Her Own Recollection
Madison v. Frazier

Tenn.: Tennessee Libel Case Tests Scope of Shield Law
State Supreme Court Declines Application for Appeal on Source Confidentiality
Jones v. Hays

N.Y. App.: Summary Judgment Affirmed in Photo Privacy Lawsuit
Claim Untimely, Majority Declines to Address First Amendment Defense
Nussenzweig v. DiCorcia

C.D. Ill.: Court Says Book Cover Photo is Commercial Speech
Motion for Reconsideration Pending
Christianson v. Henry Holt, LLC

N.Y.: Court Rules that Employer’s Statements on U-5 Forms are Absolutely Privileged
Decision Resolves Split Among State Appellate Divisions About Extent of Privilege
Rosenberg v. MetLife, Inc.

Minn.: Absolute Judicial-Proceedings Immunity Applied to Breach of Confidence Claims
Claims Sounded in Defamation Law
Mahoney & Hagberg v. Newgard

10th Cir.: Court Declines to Find Colorado’s Criminal Libel Statute Unconstitutional
Student Threatened With Prosecution Lacked Standing to Challenge Law
Mink v. Suthers

10th Cir.: Tenth Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment Dismissing Candidate’s § 1983 Claim
No State Action in Threatened Criminal Libel Prosecution
How v. Baxter Springs

E.D. Tenn.: Court Grants Motion to Dismiss HIPPA Claim Against Reporter, Newspaper
Plaintiff Failed to State a Claim for Violations of HIPPA, § 1983
Reid v. Purkey


N.D. Cal.: Book Author Settles Suit With James Joyce Estate
Withdraws Declaratory Judgment Motion, Moves for Attorney Fees
Shloss v. Sweeney (Estate of James Joyce)


Fla.: Florida Supreme Court Stops Secret Dockets Known as Super Sealers
Court Calls Practice “Clearly Offensive” to State Commitment to Open Government
In re: Amendments to Fla. Rule of Judicial Admin. 2.420–Sealing of Court Records

Mass.: Supreme Judicial Court Rules Press Has No Right to Attend “Show Cause” Process
Process Was Historically Not Public
Eagle-Tribune Publ’g Co. v. Clerk-Magistrate

N.D. Ill.: Judge Denies Request for Immediate Access to Names of Jurors in Conrad Black Trial
Fair Trial, Juror Privacy Interests Bar Disclosure
United States v. Black

D. Colo.: Colorado Court Declines to Release Discovery Materials from Columbine Shootings
Depositions Taken During Related Causes of Action to be Sealed for 20 Years
Rohrbough v. Harris

N.D. Cal.: Fox Prevails in Long-Running Dispute over Access to Interview Outtakes
Federal Criminal Defendant Sought Outtakes from America’s Most Wanted
United States v. Lin

3d Cir.: Third Circuit Sides With Media by Upholding Access Rights
Provides Greater Speech Protections for Attorneys
United States v. Wecht


E.D. Pa.: A “Final Adjudication” In The COPA Case
Statute Not Narrowly Tailor, Vague and Overbroad
ACLU v. Gonzales

Wash.: Reporters Privilege Update: Washington Enacts Shield Law, State Updates

D.C. Cir.: Dow Jones, AP Renew Motion to Unseal Plame Grand Jury Materials