Friday, 21 December 2007

Bloggers entitled to protect their sources

Thanks to colleague Andrew Doyle for spotting that a US court has ruled that bloggers are as entitled as journalists to protect their sources.

The BBC reports that computer firm Apple brought a lawsuit to make fan site Think Secret reveal who had leaked details about the cut-down computer.

Apple is notoriously secretive about forthcoming products and it sued Think Secret claiming that bloggers should not enjoy the same rights to protect sources granted to mainstream journalists.

A California court initially sided with Apple but the hi-tech firm lost the case on appeal. The outcome of that said bloggers should be considered as journalists and subject to the same protections.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) aided Think Secret in its legal fight to stop Apple forcing it to reveal its sources.

But it reports that the end result of the case is that Think Secret will be closed down.

Think Secret issued this press release:

Apple and Think Secret have settled their lawsuit, reaching an agreement that results in a positive solution for both sides. As part of the confidential settlement, no sources were revealed and Think Secret will no longer be published. Nick Ciarelli, Think Secret's publisher, said "I'm pleased to have reached this amicable settlement, and will now be able to move forward with my college studies and broader journalistic pursuits."

which is presumably the blogging equivalent of "spending more time with his family" in UK politics.

But a good judgement, nonetheless.

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