The right to record police activity
The RTDNA said the right to record police activity is up on the air because of a recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court. The organization said the high court – without explanation - announced November 1 it will not hear Frasier v. Evans, et al., a case from the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver that could have resolved the issue once and for all.
According to the RTDNA, fewer than half of the U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals have clearly ruled that citizens, including journalists, have the right lawfully to record police activity subject to reasonable time, manner, and place restrictions.
In states covered by the remaining federal appeals courts, that right exists only if states or local jurisdictions have chosen to make it so. The RTDNA said many have, but some have not, leading to confusion and inconsistently enforced laws and policies.
Shop Talk is a weekly panel discussion about journalism issues. This week’s program featured Will Buss, who teaches in the Department of Broadcasting and Journalism at Western Illinois University and advises the student editors at the Western Courier, the students at student radio station The Dog, and the WIU chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists; Rajvee Subramanian, who teaches in the Department of Broadcasting and Journalism at Western Illinois University; and TSPR News Director Rich Egger.