The course has two major goals: to engage students in a critical review of the substantive law governing the gathering and dissemination of information by print, broadcast and Internet; and to achieve a fresh understanding of the appropriateness and adequacy of the constitutional protection that this body of law affords the "institutional press.".
The course will consider the bundle of speech and press rights protected under the First Amendment, the theories upon which our system of freedom of expression is based, and how these theories are used by litigants in constitutional litigation and by courts in articulating constitutional principles.
It will survey the constitutional principles, laws and regulations that shape the operations of the institutional press, including primarily the laws regulating the content of speech (libel, privacy, rights of publicity) and the gathering of news (access rights, newsgathering torts, reportersâ privilege). And it will assess the impact of technology and globalization on the evolution of legal standards that protect freedom of speech and of the press, including an overview of the differing approaches to regulation of speech and press in the United States, the British Commonwealth and the European Community.