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Hearing Friday Could Determine the Future of Online Journalists' Rights

PRESS RELEASE
March 2, 2005

San Jose, CA - This Friday, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) will face attorneys for Apple Computer in a hearing to determine whether three independent online journalists will be given the same legal protections as journalists who work for traditional media publications.

Apple is suing several unnamed individuals, called "Does," who allegedly leaked information about an upcoming product code-named "Asteroid." Apple has subpoenaed Nfox, the Internet service provider (ISP) for PowerPage.com publisher Jason O'Grady, demanding that the ISP turn over the communications and unpublished materials O'Grady obtained while he was gathering information for his articles about "Asteroid." Apple has also been granted permission to issue subpoenas directly to EFF clients PowerPage and AppleInsider for similar information.

In the first case of its kind, EFF will argue that these online reporters' confidential sources and unpublished material are protected by both the reporter's shield in the California constitution and the reporter's privilege under the federal First Amendment. The hearing will take place Friday, March 4, at 10:00 a.m. at the Santa Clara County Superior Court, 191 North First Street, San Jose. Press are welcome to attend.

Kevin Bankston
Attorney, Equal Justice Works / Bruce J. Ennis Fellow
Electronic Frontier Foundation
bankston@eff.org

Kurt Opsahl
Staff Attorney
Electronic Frontier Foundation
kurt@eff.org

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