Invasion of privacy what you are and are not entitled to in the eyes of the law
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Invasion of privacy what you are and are not entitled to in the eyes of the law

Image courtesy of http://face.com/blog/some-privacy-please/

Invasion of Privacy – What you are (and are not) entitled to in the eyes of the law


*All information furnished in this presentation courtesy of the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

The legal right of privacy has been defined as the right to be let alone, the right of a person "to withhold himself and his property from public scrutiny if he so chooses."

Federal Trade Commission v. American Tobacco Co. 262 U.S. 276 (1923)

However, unlike the First Amendment right to free speech, privacy (in the media context) is not a right explicitly guaranteed by the Constitution. Instead, privacy law has developed over the last 100 years. During that time, four separate kinds of privacy invasion have emerged:

  • Public Disclosure of Private and Embarrassing Facts,

  • False Light,

  • Intrusion and

  • Misappropriation.


Public disclosure of private and embarrassing facts
Public Disclosure of Private and Embarrassing Facts the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

What’s typically off limits?


Public disclosure of private and embarrassing facts1
Public Disclosure of Private and Embarrassing Facts the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

What’s the exception to the rule?

If it’s NEWSWORTHY…

and this is often deemed the case in stories involving PUBLIC FIGURES or PUBLIC OFFICIALS.


Public disclosure of private and embarrassing facts2
Public Disclosure of Private and Embarrassing Facts the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

But what about…

SMITH vs. DAILY MAIL, 1979 – If the information is “lawfully obtained” and “truthfully” reported…


False light
False Light the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

https://breisebreiseleighgoleire1969.wordpress.com/tag/false-light/

  • “To unflatteringly portray – in words or pictures – a person as something that he or she is not.”

    • misleading captions that are “highly offensive to a reasonable person” and

    • was published with a reckless disregard or the knowledge that the subject would be placed in false light


Intrusion upon seclusion
Intrusion upon Seclusion the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

  • There exists a general expectation of privacy, but newsworthiness can be a defense for this, too!

  • Types include…

    • trespassing

    • secret surveillance (such as bugging equipment or hidden cameras)

      • laws vary from state to state

    • misrepresentation (which occurs when a disguise or front is used to trespass or engage in something that would otherwise not be allowed)

http://abcnews.go.com/topics/news/world/kate-middleton.htm


Information illegally obtained by a source
Information illegally obtained by a source the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

NO JOURNALISTIC MISCONDUCT OR ENCOURAGEMENT OF OTHERS TO ENGAGE IN MISCONDUCT =

PRINT IT! (especially if it’s newsworthy)

Well, the law says you can, but that doesn’t mean that you should.


Misappropriation of name or likeness
Misappropriation of Name or Likeness the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

http://rubinoworld.com/tag/jerry-falwell/

“The unauthorized use of a person’s name, photograph, likeness, voice or endorsement to promote the sale of a commercial product or service.”


Consent
Consent the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

This is only a valid defense if you obtain the consent from someone with a legal right to give it.

Can a minor give valid consent?

If a minor is “capable of appreciating the nature, extent and probable consequences of the conduct (to which he consents) AND the minor is fully informed of what is taking place, then YES!!!

The exception?

Elementary-aged children


Ferpa family educational rights and privacy act
FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

The purpose of the law: To provide students and their parents/guardians with access to school records (academic, medical, etc.) AND to penalize schools that release certain records to “third” parties.

How it’s used: No one is authorized to furnish or report information, or publish images, that would qualify as “private” under FERPA

What the law really allows: While school officials are prohibited from releasing certain information about students, student journalists are not.


The b ottom line
The the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.Bottom Line

What you CAN do…

is not always what you SHOULD do.

Weigh both the law and morality in every journalistic decision you make.

http://www.shbailbonds.com/code-of-ethics-how-bail-bonds-agent-relates-fellow-bail-agent/


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

1. What are the four types of privacy invasion?


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

2. Legally speaking, journalists can get around privacy law if they can show that what they report possesses what quality?


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

3. Thanks to Smith vs. Daily Mail, journalists can legally report private information on minors if it meets what two pieces of criteria?


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

4. What are the three types of intrusion upon seclusion?


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

5. What is the criteria for publishing information that is illegally collected and furnished by a source?


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

6. What criteria is used to determine if a minor can give legal consent?


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

7. How are student journalists and school officials viewed differently in the eyes of the law as it relates to FERPA?


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

  • What are the four types of privacy invasion?

    • Public Disclosure of Private and Embarrassing Facts

    • False Light

    • Intrusion

    • Misappropriation


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

2. Legally speaking, journalists can get around privacy law if they can show that what they report possesses what quality?

Newsworthiness


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

3. Thanks to Smith vs. Daily Mail, journalists can legally report private information on minors if it meets what two pieces of criteria?

It is lawfully obtained and truthfully reported.


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

4. What are the three types of intrusion upon seclusion?

trespassing, secret surveillance and misrepresentation


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

5. What is the criteria for publishing information that is illegally collected and furnished by a source?

It must come as a result of ZERO journalistic misconduct.


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

6. What criteria is used to determine if a minor can give legal consent?

If the minor can appreciate the nature, extent and probable consequences of the conduct (to which s/he consents)

AND

the minor is fully informed of what is taking place


Quiz the Student Press Law Center. All images from this point on courtesy of Clip Art, unless otherwise specified.

7. How are student journalists and school officials viewed differently in the eyes of the law as it relates to FERPA?

School officials are not allowed to release certain information to third parties, but student journalists are not bound by the same law.


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