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Mass Comm Law Exam 1
University of Colorado JOUR 4651
94
Journalism
02/10/2011

Additional Journalism Flashcards

 


 

Cards

Term
Sources of Law
Definition

1. The U.S. Consitution

2. U.S. federal laws

3. State constitution

4. State laws

5. Common law

6. Equity law

Term
federal supremacy
Definition
federal law takes precedence over state law
Term
What does it mean for congress to preempt the field?
Definition
Only Congress can make laws in a certain area
Term
definition of a "law"
Definition
adopted by a legislative body and usually signed by the top person in the executive branch
Term
regulatory agencies
Definition

adopt rules and regulations, but not laws

ex. FCC

Term
executive orders
Definition
President can issue an order that has all the efect of law
Term
True or False: There are four types of court systems in the United States.
Definition

True. 

U.S. Federal courts, state courts, D.C., military

Term
Elements of a trial court
Definition

judge

lawyers

parties or defendant

jury

evidence

witnesses

cross-examination

Term
Elements of appellate courts
Definition

judges and lawyers

briefs

the trial record

Term
True or false: Appellate courts involve a jury.
Definition
False. There are no parties or defendant, witnesses, evidence or cross examination
Term
What are the two levels of appellate courts in state and federal systems?
Definition
intermediate and supreme
Term
True or false: intermediate appellate courts must take appeals.
Definition
True. But Supreme courts do not have to.
Term
Where does a dispute involving a state constitution or state law go?
Definition
To courts in that state. Same for federal issues.
Term
Where does a case go if opposing parties live in different states?
Definition
Federal court
Term
stare decisis
Definition

let past decisions rule

Courts will follow previously decided cases with facts similar to the cases before the judge

Term
What are the two kinds of precedent?
Definition
Mandatory and permissive
Term
Mandatory precedent
Definition

A judge must follow the decision of a higher court in the same court system.

All state and federal courts must follow U.S. Supreme court

Term
Permissive precedent
Definition
A judge may follow the decision (if facts are similar) of any other court
Term
True or false: Courts must always follow precedent.
Definition

False. 

1. Courts may distinguish the case before it from a previously decided case.

2. Courts may overrule its previous decision. Usually only done by supreme courts.

Term
What are the categories of law?
Definition
Criminal law and civil law
Term
criminal law
Definition

The government brings criminal charges against some company or someone.

Ex. assault and battery, homicide, theft

Term
What standard does a jury use in criminal law?
Definition
Guilt beyond a reasonable doubt
Term
Civil law
Definition

Government not involved, between individuals

ex. landlord and tenant, contracts, corporations, torts

Term
Standard used by a jury in a civil law case
Definition
preponderance of the evidence (majority)
Term
Torts
Definition
harm done by one person or entity to another
Term
Plaintiff
Definition
person bringing the lawsuit
Term
Defendant
Definition
Party being sued (civil); or person being charged (criminal)
Term
Appellant
Definition
Appeals a decission
Term
Appellee
Definition
Original winner in trial court. Gets dragged to appellate court against his/her wishes.
Term
Summary Judgment
Definition

Both sides agree on the facts OR

Judge looks at facts in least favorable light for party asking for summary judgment. 

Judge applies law to facts and makes a ruling

Term
What is expression?
Definition
speech, print, art, dance, etc.
Term
Symbolic speech
Definition
Action by itself. Courts consider it speech, not action IF it has communicative content
Term
What types of speech are not free?
Definition
Blackmail, extortion, bribery, perjury, false advertising, obscenity
Term
Original intent
Definition
Interpretation of the First Amendment based on what its adopters intended in 1791
Term
Reasons to limit government regulation
Definition

1. If a law is vague.

2. If a law is overbroad.

3. Prior restraint

Term
What is a vague law?
Definition

A law is vague if an average person can't know what is legal or illegal. 

Ex. It is illegal to "play music too loudly"

Term
What is an overbroad law?
Definition

A law is overbroad if it limits more speech than is consitutionally allowed

 

Term
Prior restraint
Definition
Government censorship. Government intervenes before publication occurs
Term
When could prior restraint be ok?
Definition

1. threat to national security

2. Obscenity

3. Incitement to violence

4. Fighting words

Term
What examples did the Court give to define national security?
Definition

Location of ships during wartime

Location of troops during wartime

Term
The Pentagon Papers
Definition
The court will not allow prior restraint of documents with historical information, although they may embarrass the government
Term
Definition
Term
fighting words
Definition
Words likely to cause an immediate breach of the peace 
Term
true threat
Definition
direct threat to one or more individuals with the intent to cause listener fear of bodily harm or death
Term
presumptively unconstitutional
Definition
prior restraint is presumptively unconstitutional. A court starts with the assumption that a prior restraint is unconstitutional and the government must prove otherwise.
Term
Highest level of government interest
Definition

Compelling interest:

To protect public health, safety or welfare.

Speech.

Term
Intermediate level of government interest
Definition

Substantial interest:

Important (not compelling) government interest. Not a health or safety risk.

Speech and action.

Term
Lowest level of government interest
Definition

Rational interest: can't be arbitrary interst, must prove that it's a fair law(applies to everyone and is logical and rational)

Action.

Term

Content neutral government restriction

 

Definition

Time, place and manner restrictions.

Secondary effects. 

Term
What level of scrutiny do courts apply in content neutral restrictions?
Definition

Intermediate.

Government must have a substantial interest and allow a reasonable alternative for expression.

Term
What level of scrutiny to courts apply to content-based restriction?
Definition

strict scrutiny.

Government must show a compelling interest and be the most narrowly drawn regulation possible. 

Term
Three types of public forums
Definition

1. Traditional

2. Designated

3. Non-public

Term
Traditional public forum
Definition
Sidewalks, streets, parks
Term
True or false: speech is not protected in a traditional public forum.
Definition
False. 
Term
Designated public forum
Definition

Government regulates time and manner of use. 

Ex. City-owned auditorium, Norlin quad

Term
True or false: Speech is protected in a designated forum.
Definition
True. Speech is protected if the government has regularly allowed people to speak there.
Term
Non-public forum
Definition

Public assembly would conflict with the primary usage of the space. 

Ex. military base, airports, prisons, post offices

Term
True or false: Speech is not protected in non-public forums.
Definition
True. Speech is protected only if and when the government allows speech.
Term
Compelled Speech
Definition

The first amendment protects against the government forcing a person to speak.

Ex. Pledge of allegiance, license plate, St. Patrick's day parade

Term
Viewpoint regulation
Definition

Limiting one side of an argument, but allowing other sides.

Courts apply strict scrutiny

Term
Indirect regulation
Definition

No direct governmental limit on speech, but government allows speech restriction.

Ex. Hostile audience

Term

Unprotected speech

 

Definition

1. Clear and present danger

2. Speech causing harm to others

Term
Clear and present danger
Definition

1. Advocacy,

2. Directed to inciting or producing

3. Imminent lawless action

4. and is likely to cause that action

Term
Speech causing harm to others
Definition

black mail

extortion

obscenity

child pornography

fighting words 

Term
Which type of speech is often said to have the most protection?
Definition
Political expression
Term
special damages
Definition

out-of-pocket losses.

Money lost because of slander (in old England)

Term
Slander Per se
Definition

Plaintiff doesn't have to prove special damages if words fall into 4 categories:

1. serious crime

2. injure person in his/her business or profession

3. serious sexual misconduct

4. accusation of having a loathsome disease

Term
Slander per quod
Definition
any slander that does not fall into one of the four slander per se categories
Term
Definition
Term
Libel per se
Definition
libelous on its face
Term
libel per quod
Definition
not libelous on its face, but requires more facts to be libelous
Term
Libel is:
Definition

  • A false statement
  • That is published
  • and that injures a plaintiff's reputation

Term
Strict liability libel
Definition
Before 1964, plaintiff could win by proving only 3 elements. Fault is not a factor
Term
Modern definition of libel
Definition

  • A statement of fact (not opinion)
  • That is published
  • Is of and concerning the plaintiff
  • is defamatory
  • is the result of fault by the defendant
  • is false
  • that causes actual or presumed injury
  • and is not absolutely or conditionally priveleged

Term
True or false: a dead person can be a libel plaintiff.
Definition
False. Your reputation dies when you die.
Term
Definition
Term
True or false: Profit-making businesses and non-profit organizations can be libel plaintiffs.
Definition
True. 
Term
Definition
Term
Elements of a plaintiff's libel case
Definition

1. Publication

2. Identification

3. Defamation

4. Fault

5. Falsity

6. Damages

Term
Definition of publication
Definition
Seen and hear by a third party who understands.
Term
True or false: If a story has been published in a mass medium, the plaintiff still must prove that the information has been seen or heard by a third party.
Definition
False. Courts assume at least one third party has seen or heard a story in a mass medium. 
Term
Republication
Definition
Repeating someone else's defamatory statement
Term
True or false: A reporter cannot be sued for publishing a libelous statement, even though he was not the one that created the information.
Definition
False. 
Term
Are ISPs responsible for Internet libel?
Definition
No. They are not republishers.
Term
Are local affiliates of a television network or bookstore owners republishers?
Definition
No. They cannot be sued for libel if it is in the content of what they are distibuting. 
Term
Definition of identification
Definition
"of and concerning" the plaintiff
Term
Proving identification in court
Definition
At least one person must reasonably believe the material was of and concerning the plaintiff
Term
True or false: A person cannot be identified if his or her name is not mentioned.
Definition
False. There can be identification even if the plaintiff's name is not used. 
Term
True or false: There can be identification in fiction.
Definition
True
Term
What are the limits for identification of a group member?
Definition

If there are fewer than 25, any member may prove defamation.

If there are more than 100 in the group, not a chance. 

Term
Defamation
Definition
Injury to reputation
Term
reputation
Definition
what others think about the plaintiff. NOT the plaintiff's feelings
Term
Proving defamation in court
Definition

1. A substantial and respectable minority of the community thinks less of the plaintiff

2. The plaintiff is hurt in his/her job or profession

3. Plaintiff is accused of a serious crime

Term
Definition