LAW & ETHICS
COMM 4313
COMM

 

the american legal system

This topic deals with the sources of American law. American law originates from The Constitution, legislative statutes, judicial precedent, administrative law, and executive orders. Read more here...

Commercial Speech

Corporations have rights to express themselves too. But do they enjoy full 1st Amendment protections? This topic is centered on the Central Hudson case and how the courts have applied it to alcohol advertising, tobacco promotion, gambling etc. Also, how do agencies like the FTC regulate advertising? Read more here...

defamation

What exactly amounts to libel and slander? What privileges do news organizations have - or don't have - when reporting on issues injurious to one's reputation? How is a defamation tort resolved in court? Read more here...

Privacy

Privacy has to do with the right to be left alone. It is the ability of citizens to shield themselves from the public view and control information about them. Privacy violation deals with misappropriation, private facts, false light and intrusion. Read more here...

Obscenity

Creative expression is subject to varied interpretation. When is nudity a form of artistic expression and when is it purely offensive? When is the distribution of adult oriented material illegal? How about the portrayal of minors and teens in sexualized roles in movies and books? Read more here...

Copyright Law

a.k.a. intellectual property, copyright protects literary and artistic creations. Not every creative work is protected. This topics look at what is protected, who can claim ownership, for how long and when we can use other people's creations; aka the Fair Use Doctrine. Read more here...

Regulating the internet

Like traditional media, the Internet enjoys full 1st Amendment protections. But since the Internet is unlike most media, what has the government done to curb the spread of 'indecent' material? How have the courts responded to these efforts, especially when it comes to protecting children from accessing adult material online? Read more here...

Mass Media Ethics

While the topics outlined above encompass media ethics issues, other topics of interest include:

News gathering privilege Read more here...

Photo ethics and stereotypes Read more here...