Art Vandelay wrote:Madison wrote:There were crimes committed, he's got a tape that could help show exactly what happened, who did what, etc., and he is refusing to turn over that possible evidence? Why?
Principle. It's not necessarily about this particular case, but about the precedent.
Sounds more like a macho thing than a principal thing, or a lame attempt to get his blog more popular.
What bad comes from him providing a copy of the footage? It's been done before, and will be done again in the future. Most people are happy to assist in an investigation when all they have to do is give a copy of what they've got. It's not that big of a deal, and shielding a criminal most certainly should be a crime.
Art Vandelay wrote:Madison wrote:It's no different than hiding a known murderer from the police in my opinion. What's the difference in assisting in a crime, and withholding evidence of a crime?
It's not like the government *thinks* something might have happened and want to see a copy of what he's got, they know crimes were committed.
We just have a difference of opinion here. The thing is, it's his role as a journalist to document the event, it's not his job or his duty to help the government make a case. Having the government force journalists to hand over the work (video, audio recordings, notes, etc.) is treading dangerously close to getting rid of the free press as we know it.
He's not helping the government make a case. He doesn't even have to go out of his way. A simple copy of the tape is all they asked for. It's not like they are forcing him to go undercover, put his life in danger, or anything of the sort. Simply copy the tape and give them a copy. That's work? That's too much to ask?
The other is how is it getting rid of the free press? All they want is a copy. He's making a mountain out of a molehill. It's simple and easy to do, so where's the problem?
Do you think if someone who claimed to be a journalist had a video of the plane that hit the White House, that they shouldn't be required to turn over a copy of it to the government? If someone has proof of a crime that happened, I see zero reason for them to be able to refuse to do something as simple as provide a copy of the media used to record the transgression.
Art Vandelay wrote:Madison wrote:See, I disagree with this as well. Just because someone blogs, writes an article, posts up a home video, etc, that does not constitute them as a "journalist" to me.
And you're definitely with the majority there. If you would have asked me 15, 10, possibly even five years ago I may have agreed, but I don't anymore. And this is coming from someone who is an actual "journalist." Most of my colleagues absolutely abhor the popularity and apparent legitimacy of bloggers, podcasters, etc.
Depends on what you call legitimate. Do people blog? Sure. Does that make them a journalist? Not anywhere close. No different than an online diary, or a place for them to vent about whatever. I know tons of people with blogs, and I don't consider any of them journalists. In fact, not one of them claims to be a journalist either. These "rights" to protect criminals simply because someone claims to be a journalist because they have a web page or a blog is a bit beyond silly in my eyes.
Art Vandelay wrote:Madison wrote:Just because I write an article about the All-Star Game voting being a joke (which I did do), that doesn't automatically make me a journalist and mean I don't have to comply with police, the courts, and/or the government.
Well, in all other facets of your life you'd still have to comply, but if the government came knocking on your door because they said they needed the notes from your article (or tape recordings if you had interviewed someone) to help them with their steroid investigation, I would absolutely fight for your right to keep those from investigators.
I'd gladly turn copies of the notes, recordings, or whatever over to them. If someone broke the law, then they should be punished. Simple as that. If I refused, then I'd expect to be in jail for hiding a criminal.
Good example, a couple of months ago, one of my neighbors juiced up their stereo and left their 4 year old daughter home alone (the juiced up stereo was to cover her screams and cries). I did record the cries and screams (along with the music) while waiting for the police to show up. I called the police and they broke down the door to get the little girl and the parents went to jail. Now had I decided to write an article about the situation and upload the tape to the internet, and not called the police, while hiding under the disguise of a "journalist", would that make me any less of a criminal for not reporting it to the proper authorities? I'd view anyone who did that as a criminal, real journalist, imposter journalist, or none of the above. I shouldn't be allowed to hide as an imposter journalist simply because I don't want to cooperate with the proper authorities.