Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Louisville Freedom-of-information session March 13

Do you want to add more depth to your stories by obtaining copies of government records, but you aren’t sure how to get them or what records are open to you? Are public agencies making decisions in closed meetings that should be open to the public and the media? Do you have a web site and are uncertain about what non-original material you can legally post on your site, without violating copyright or fair use laws? And what about those comments your readers are posting on your site? Are you legally responsible for what they say? Are judges going too far when they prohibit journalists from blogging or tweeting from the courtroom during a trial? What about live streaming of a trial on the internet?

You can get the answers to these questions at a Freedom of Information seminar, sponsored by the Louisville Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, on Saturday, March 13, from 9 a.m. to noon at Bellarmine University. The event will be held in the Brown Activity Center, which also houses Frazier Hall and the student cafeteria, in the communication wing, room 203.

First Amendment attorneys Richard M. Goehler and Monica Dias with the law firm of Frost Brown Todd, will present three lively and informative sessions. The first will focus on FOI and open records issues. The second will address legal issues facing bloggers and other operators of internet web sites. And the third will examine the latest judges’ decisions regarding tweeting and blogging from inside the courtroom. Each session will last about 50 minutes. These are interactive sessions where you will have the opportunity to ask legal experts questions on these important topics.

The cost for attending all three session $10 for SPJ members and $15 for non-members. Those who join SPJ at the event may attend for free. Admission is free for students

Registration will begin at 8:45 a.m. The first session will begin at 9 a.m. The final session will conclude at noon.

You must register by March 10 by contacting Robyn Davis Sekula at, or calling 812-981-8223.

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