Sports Law Blog
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Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Update in Price v. SI Case: Federal judge C. Lynwood Smith in the Northern District of Alabama has certified the question of whether or not a Sports Illustrated writer must reveal his sources to the Alabama Supreme Court. In a 31-page opinion (no link available), Smith reiterates his position that Alabama's press shield law does not apply to magazines, but asks the Supreme Court for a ruling on the issue. The move heads off a decision by the publication to appeal to the 11th Circuit.

The Shield Law, Alabama Code ยง 12-21-142, provides:

"No person engaged in, connected with or employed on any newspaper, radio broadcasting station or television
station, while engaged in a news-gathering capacity, shall be compelled to disclose in any legal proceeding or trial,
before any court or before a grand jury of any court, before the presiding officer of any tribunal or his agent or agents
or before any committee of the legislature or elsewhere the sources of any information procured or obtained by him
and published in the newspaper, broadcast by any broadcasting station, or televised by any television station on
which he is engaged, connected with or employed."

The fact that the case will not (for now) go to the 11th Circuit also has implications on another high-profile case, that of Richard Jewell, the man accused in the Olympic Park bombing case.


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