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Law School Podcast: The Intersection of Media and Law

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President Trump and other politicians have painted the media as the “enemy of the people” -- purveyors of fake news who use their platform as a means to defame others. But really, what are the legal requirements of the media when reporting news? 

In this episode of Planet Lex, Northwestern Pritzker School of Law vice dean and host Jim Speta talks to Northwestern Law alumnae Kate Shaw, a professor of law at Cardozo Law School and the co-director of the Floersheimer Center for Constitutional Democracy, and Megan Murphy, former editor-in-chief of Bloomberg Businessweek, about their experiences as lawyers in the media. 

They discuss the many legal issues facing journalists and pundits, and whether more law is needed to manage these matters. They also give tips on how to cultivate an ideologically diverse media diet and discuss the impact of social media on news.

Excerpts from the interview 
“Using Twitter to attack the media is wholly without historical precedent -- to attack the media in whatever format -- whether we’re talking about at a rally, at an interview or a press conference or via Twitter -- that degree of adversarial relationship … attempts to sow real doubt about the credibility of the media as an institution, and I think, is largely without precedent and profoundly concerning.” – Kate Shaw

“Nowhere in the UK, or in most western European democracies, is there this debate about fake news. Is there a concern about the blurring of commentary lines, is there a concern more that the consumption of content and what people have shown an affinity for is opinion/commentary? Absolutely. There’s no question that there’s a decline in the consumption of hard news because people have been shown through social media, through online, to gravitate toward their center of opinion and stories that they agree with and that’s just natural human instinct.” – Megan Murphy

About Planet Lex
The Legal Talk Network produces the Planet Lex podcast series. The podcasts typically feature interviews with prominent Northwestern faculty members, discussing the law’s role in changing global, societal and technological landscapes.

Topics of earlier episodes include defending Brendan Dassey; the evolution of music copyright law; sexual misconduct on campus; the regulation of public corruption; technological advancements and the law; law enforcement and implicit bias; and integrating the law and STEM-focused multidisciplinary education; online privacy and cybersecurity; and the U.S. Supreme Court.
Listen to all 26 episodes.

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