When The Bench Uses a Club

Journalists face more subpoenas to hand over notes and sources -- often for dubious or gratuitous reasons

What you see often depends on where you sit. If it is in a newsroom, you probably believe what democracy needs most is to protect the free flow of information. If it is on a judicial bench or in a prosecutor's office, you probably focus on respect for the rule of law. In truth, free press and fair trial are both important values. But they can collide, and increasingly journalists lose. News organizations find themselves ever more under court order to reveal confidential sources and sometimes to hand over notes en bloc -- often to a lawyer on a fishing expedition...

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