KANSAS — The country’s oldest national scholastic journalismorganization for teachers and advisers adopted an official statementat its November national convention opposing any restriction onlegally protected speech on scholastic journalism Web sites andspecifically endorsed the use of student names and photos.
According to the statement issued by the Journalism EducationAssociation: “Since commercial print publications have norestrictions on use of names and/or photos, and since JEA believesscholastic publications should also experience similar freedoms,we see no difference in the way the scholastic publications usingthe Internet should be treated.”
A similar statement was passed about the same time by the NationalPress Photographers Association, a professional association ofover 10,000 photojournalists.
In addition to encouraging sound journalism, the JEA and NPPAstatements accurately reflect the law in this area. Despite claimsby many school officials, there are no federal laws prohibiting the useof minors’ names or photos on the Internet where the same materialcould lawfully be published in a printed publication.