In 1969, the Supreme Court established in Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District that students have the right to freedom of expression at school as long as their expression does not cause "substantial disruption." But when some colleges and universities tried to govern students' rights, those students took the matter to court and, in some cases, prevailed. These cases did not involve the media, but the court rulings may impact student journalism.
Tag: Winter 2008-09
Ditching the "Red Cup": Have you been punished for Facebook photos?
Who would have thought that when Illinois-based Solo Cup Co. first introduced the red plastic drinking cup on Nov. 20, 1972, students would be getting reprimanded nearly 35 years later for posing in a photo with the telltale red container?
Students find independence tricky
When former editors at the university-sponsored newspaper, the Chronicle, leaped to an independent, online-only newspaper, Quinnipiac University officials in Hamden, Conn., isolated themselves from the student journalists.
Keeping your case alive after graduation
Although graduation day is traditionally a time for celebration and for new beginnings, it can bring an unhappy ending to the legal claims of a student who is challenging school censorship. In general, challenges to school policies must be raised by currently affected students. When a student graduates, a court may dismiss her claims as moot. Several federal appeals courts have agreed. Lane v. Simon, a 2007 case decided by the Tenth Circuit, illustrates how this mootness problem can present serious challenges to student press plaintiffs' ability to secure their First Amendment rights through litigation. But Lane also provided a road map of possible ways to overcome a claim of mootness.
From Florida to Texas, newspaper thieves are learning after the first free copy of a newspaper, if they do not pay monetarily, they will pay somehow. But theft prevention tips may help to thwart a thief's plan and save the newspaper money.
Campus crimes slip through cracks
On April 5, 1986, 19-year-old Jeanne Clery was asleep in her dorm room at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pa. Another student broke into her room, tortured, raped and killed her. Her killer had entered the building through a door that was supposed to be locked but was propped open. Jeanne's parents found out after her death that there had been 181 reports of doors propped open in her building in the four months before her murder and that students had not been told about multiple violent crimes on campus over the past few years.
Sweeping under rugs
Sexual assault is a serious cause for concern at any university, and when student athletes are involved, the cases can cause a media sensation. Recent developments in an assault case involving two former football players at the University of Iowa in Iowa City have caused more than the usual furor.
Shining a light on campus politics
This spring, banners and signs will adorn campuses. Students will stand behind tables around campus, handing out fliers and trying to convince passersby that their candidate is the best for the job.
Student reporters arrested in protests at conventions
Hundreds of protesters were arrested in Denver, Colo., and St. Paul, Minn., during the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, respectively, this fall. However, these mass arrests managed to snare student and professional reporters with the protesters.
April Fools’ Day editions are no joke
April 1 is traditionally a day for practical jokes like changing your friend's MySpace picture, stuffing the toes of your sibling's shoes with socks or resetting your roommate's alarm clock to 5 a.m. Many high school and college newspapers also jump into the act, publishing an April Fools' Day issue to skewer school policies and poke fun at the news they cover seriously for the other 364 days of the year.