National Press Club President Michael Freedman and National Press Club Journalism Institute President Angela Greiling Keane issued the following joint statement Friday after King County Superior Court Judge Nelson Lee in Washington State decreed that that The Seattle Times and four Seattle television stations must turn over unpublished images and video of May 30 unrest in the city.
“Journalists are not an arm of law enforcement or of the government. Judge Lee has placed Seattle news organizations in an untenable position. This disturbing decision would make reporters unwilling collaborators in a police fishing expedition and can only worsen the hostility journalists have faced covering protests across the country. Journalists have already been arrested and assaulted by law enforcement for doing their jobs. This decision is yet another attack on the free press.”
The National Press Club, the world’s leading professional organization for journalists, represents more than 3,000 reporters, editors and professional communicators worldwide. The National Press Club Journalism Institute, a nonprofit affiliate of the Club, promotes an engaged global citizenry through an independent and free press, and equips journalists with skills and standards to inform the public in ways that inspire civic engagement.
Jim Kuhnhenn, NPC Journalism Institute Press Freedom Fellow: 202 264 0783; [email protected]