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Judges say online journalists should be protected by the same laws as traditional journalists

According to reports, Apple this week decided to drop its legal battle with several online websites that leaked information about unreleased Apple products. Despite a long drawn out battle, Apple decided not to appeal a ruling by a panel of three judges that rejected Apple's arguments that the writers for the online websites were not "true journalists."

Apple went after AppleInsider, and after information was released about a FireWire product codenamed Asteroid for its music application GarageBand. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) ended up supporting the three websites and said that Apple's actions undermined the rights of journalists and threatened the safety of those who leak information to journalists. Judge Franklin Elia was quoted saying that Apple tried to "trump the First Amendment."

In May, a court ruling denied Apple rights to have the identities of those who leaked information be revealed. The case was originally filed in a Santa Clara County court but judges wondered why Apple had not performed any investigation internally. The judges felt that Apple had not exercised enough internal investigation to justify going outside of the company. "Apple has failed to establish that it adequately pursued other possible means to identify the source of the information in question," said the judges.

EFF attorney Kurt Opsahl said that "[Apple] just can't take a shortcut through a journalist" to identify the source of information. Although Apple did not submit an appeal -- and the deadline to do so has passed -- court documents showed that Apple's own internal investigators interviewed 29 employees. No details were released on the results of the investigation.

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RE: Your assessment is hollow
By OrSin on 7/13/2006 11:08:19 AM , Rating: 2
Sorry Bu I would ahve to side with apple here even if the judes don't. I'm all for free- of speech but I think people need to be accountable for what they say and print.
I can at this piont print anything i want about any one and say a source told me and I'm protected. it Might be legal but I think its crap. I think all jorunalist should have to produce proof of what they print or if the the information is clearer a link, then be responisble for the damages it causes. I know this will never be the case, but Free Speech should not the freedom print anything. Jornalist knew the leaked inforamtion was illegal gotten and people should be allow to benefit from it. And the website did benefit from it (increase ad revenue).

Once again I know its legal but IMHO it shouldn't be.

"If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion." -- Scientology founder L. Ron. Hubbard
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