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University of Kentucky Athletics takes heat for pulling student reporter's access

(08/31/11 4:56pm)

The University of Kentucky is facing backlash after the UK athletics department punished the Kernel student newspaper by revoking its invitation to a special media event. After freshman forward Anthony Davis circulated a Twitter post welcoming walk-ons Brian Long and Sam Malone to the team Sunday night, Kernel managing editor Aaron Smith wanted to confirm the news from the players.

Marshall student journalists honored for persistence in pursuing police records

(08/03/11 5:39pm)

Two college journalists at West Virginia's Marshall University have won the Society of Professional Journalists' prestigious "Sunshine Award" for exposing the existence of an off-the-books set of campus police reports separate from the ones made available for public review. The SPJ will recognize Samantha Turley and Marcus Constantino for a series of October 2010 stories in their campus newspaper, The Parthenon, documenting that the Marshall University Police Department selectively withheld some crime reports from a log provided to student journalists. The existence of "off-the-books crimes" came to light as journalists from The Parthenon inquired into widespread rumors about a sexual assault in a campus dorm (a complaint that police ultimately decided they lacked the evidence to pursue). Any report to police of a serious crime such as rape should show up in the daily crime log available for public inspection, but the log provided to The Parthenon made no mention of it. Turley and Constantino will receive their award at SPJ's national convention Sept.

"Race to the bottom" of technological ignorance gets a new entrant: Missouri

(08/01/11 4:26pm)

While school systems are battling over $500 million in federal "Race to the Top" incentive funding, many states are simultaneously "racing to the bottom" to see who can enact the most ill-considered, ineffective, and constitutionally shaky policies restricting teachers' use of technology. The current "leader" is Missouri, where a new state law recently signed by Gov.

Marking a tragic anniversary: News organizations can find free-to-use 9/11 images with a little creative searching

(08/08/11 4:02pm)

America is approaching a grim anniversary that is no cause for celebration -- 10 years since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 -- and many journalistic organizations, including campus ones, will be looking for the right images from the tragedy to accompany their coverage. This is an excellent reminder that, while journalists should always assume that material they find online is copyright-protected property and may not be indiscriminately reused, the Internet does offer some copyright-safe refuges. The first is material created by federal government employees as part of their employment.

Pennsylvania court says it's okay for college to snoop on student email

(08/16/11 2:06am)

.  Surprise Yourself! — Elizabethtown College recruiting slogan A former student at Elizabethtown College was, indeed, probably surprised earlier this month after a Pennsylvania federal district court ruled that the school broke no rules when it hired an investigation service to snoop on his email account without his knowledge. In a

Federal court says Nev. student's instant messages no laughing matter

(08/17/11 1:47pm)

At a comedy club, a bad joke can get you booed. At school, a bad joke can get you expelled. Landon Wynar was a student at Nevada’s Douglas County High School in 2008 when he and a friend had several Internet conversations in which he discussed shooting schoolmates and compared himself to Seung-Hui Cho, the gunman behind the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre.

ACLU sues Missouri school district over Internet filtering

(08/18/11 4:18pm)

A school district in Missouri is the first in the country to face a lawsuit brought on by the American Civil Liberties Union’s “Don’t Filter Me!” campaign, an initiative designed to take one-sided Internet filtering to task. The ACLU filed a lawsuit Monday against the Camdenton R-III School District for its custom-built filtering software that blocks sites for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities while still allowing anti-LGBT sites. The filtering software the district uses employs the website database URL Blacklist, which includes viewpoint-neutral categories blocking sexually explicit sites in addition to a “sexuality” category that blocks sites with LGBT information, including sites that are not sexually explicit. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of four LGBT organizations that were blocked in the district: PFLAG National (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbian and Gays), the Matthew Shepard Foundation, Campus Pride, and DignityUSA.

Fighting censorship: A life-changing decision, vindicated by history

(08/23/11 1:24pm)

This item jumped out from today's New Orleans newspaper, a remembrance of a journalist and civic leader whose trajectory was charted by a principled decision made as a college student editor. As the Times-Picayune describes, Carl Corbin was one of seven Louisiana State University journalism students, including three editors at The Reveille newspaper, who faced discipline for standing up to Gov.

Second Circuit: "Protective" suspension and psych evaluation did not violate student's First Amendment rights

(08/25/11 1:50pm)

The Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed a decision that a principal was not unlawfully retaliating against a student he temporarily held in the school’s detention room after reading his essay depicting recreational drug use, law-breaking and suicide. The case was brought by middle school student Raphael Cox’s parents, who alleged Principal John Kolesar infringed Raphael’s freedom of speech, in addition to the parents’ right to custody of Raphael, after Kolesar filed a report to child welfare authorities suggesting the parents were inadequately protecting their son. The essay that brought on the dispute was a response to an English class assignment asking what the student would do if he had 24 hours to live.