Home > #4, Regulation > Media Regulation: Blog # 4

Media Regulation: Blog # 4

In light of the terrorist attacks on the WTC and Pentagon on 9/11/01, do you think the U.S. government should have more power to exercise prior restraint and block publication of material they have solid proof that the material might hurt national security interests. Because this would directly impact every American’s First Amendment right to freedom of speech, the boundaries and limits of the government to exercise restraint must be clearly determined. However the difficulty with this issue is that it involves two things people hold very dearly to them, their freedom and the freedom to express themselves safely. Which means that this issue is very debatable, each side containing several positive and negative attributes. Even though I believe that every person should have the right to say what they want without any government interference, there is always the concern if what that person or group of people is jeopardizing the state of national security and the safety of other people. The only problem with this is if the government were to overstep its boundaries. The American people with the government would have to determine what would constitute the government overstepping or not. This would present several challenges to try and find an agreement between both conservatives and liberals to determine the fine line between keeping the American people safe and taking away their freedom. An issue like this would have to be taken up within congress for representatives from each state to vote and try and come up with a moderate solution that lets the government regulate the media in certain extreme cases as such with the recent wikileaks issue. However, I also believe that the media keeps the American people informed as part of their responsibility to keep everyone safe. If the government starts regulating everything that the media produces, essential information that could keep everyone safe could be kept quiet or be produced with more of a positive twist so that the American people do not take a threat as serious. This is why I believe it is very important that a line is determined in order to keep the American people informed yet safe.

 

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  1. tessdoez
    January 26, 2011 at 3:48 am

    This is a good summary of why the issue is so important and sensitive, but even if you don’t have an answer for what changes you think should be made (if any), you will need to use concrete examples (the textbook is a great place to find these) of the current legislation, court cases that are pertinent to the issue, and anything else that will help you to show that you have a clear understanding of how the media is regulated. If you see both sides of the issue and don’t know which is right, then you need to give supporting evidence for both sides. Please avoid run on sentences and proofread for errors before you repost for credit.

  2. January 27, 2011 at 3:39 am

    In light of the terrorist attacks on the WTC and Pentagon on 9/11/01, I think the U.S. government should have more power to exercise prior restraint and block publication of material. However, I believe they should only be able to block the publication as long as they have solid proof that the material might hurt national security interests, or as our book refers to if there is clear and present danger. Because this would directly impact every American’s First Amendment right to freedom of speech, the boundaries and limits of the government to exercise restraint must be clearly determined. However the difficulty with this issue is that it involves two things people hold very dearly to them, their freedom and the freedom to express themselves safely, as described with the preferred-position balancing theory.
    This means that this issue is very debatable, each side containing several positive and negative attributes. Even though I believe that every person should have the right to say what they want without any government interference, there is always the concern if what that person or group of people is jeopardizing the state of national security and the safety of other people. The only problem with this is if the government were to overstep its boundaries like it did with the passing of the Alien and Sedition Acts in 1978. With these set of four acts, sedition or spoken or written criticism of the government was prohibited and imposed penalties including jailing if any US. Ciizen were to break these acts.
    The American people, along with the government, would have to determine what would constitute the government overstepping or not. This would present several challenges to try and find a balance between both conservatives and liberals to determine the fine line between keeping the American people safe and taking away their freedom. An issue like this would have to be taken up within congress for representatives from each state to vote and try and come up with a moderate solution that lets the government regulate the media in certain extreme cases as such with the recent wikileaks issue.
    However, I also believe that the media keeps the American people informed as part of their responsibility to keep everyone safe. If the government along with the FCC starts regulating everything that the media produces, essential information that could keep everyone safe could be kept quiet or be produced with more of a positive twist so that the American people do not take a threat as serious. This is why I believe it is very important that a type of shield law is maintained, where journalists right to report the news would be protected, in order to keep the American people informed yet safe.

  3. tessdoez
    January 30, 2011 at 4:10 am

    Good rewrite–I have changed your grade on Blackboard. One note: thankfully the Alien and Sedition Acts were in 1798 rather than 1978–we have come a long way since then eh? It would be pretty scary if that sort of legislation was around in the 1970’s!

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