Jasmine McNealy Participates in First Amendment News Special Edition and National Conference
University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications Telecommunication Assistant Professor Jasmine McNealy’s article “Newsworthiness, The First Amendment, and Platform Transparency” was featured in “First Amendment News’ 200th edition” published on Concurring Opinions on Sept. 20. McNealy was one of 15 women in various professions invited to draft an original essay on any aspect of free speech law for the First Amendment News special issue.
In the essay, McNealy speaks about Infowars founder and host Alex Jones being banned from social media sites. She says that the ban is based less in law and more on, at most, ethical considerations.
According to McNealy, while calls exist for policymakers and legislators to do something about the massive platforms that significantly influence the information that individuals encounter, First Amendment jurisprudence demonstrates that such incursions would most likely violate the exercise of freedom of the press. Social media users in the U.S., then, will have to find an alternative way of persuading platforms to act on objectionable content. So far, public outcry is beginning to work particularly when it targets commercial interests.
McNealy also participated in the Privacy, News, and the Future of Freedom of the Press conference for journalists, publishers, legal scholars, judges and privacy and free speech advocates at Tulane Law School in New Orleans, La. on Sept. 27-28. She was one of five panelists leading a discussion on how changing journalism practices, including the rise of on-scene posts, quasi-journalistic blogs, crowd-sourced news, digital reader comments, and talking-head coverage, have affected news judgment and attitudes toward the press.