House Reporter Shield Bill Excludes Amateurs

As mourned at the Citizen Media Law Project, the final House version of the bill (HR 2102) to protect reporters from revealing confidential sources was amended specifically to exclude unpaid journalists.

Sadly, this amendment was proposed by the bill’s lead authors, Rick Boucher (D-VA) and Mike Pence (R-IN). Boucher is generally one of the few members of Congress who “gets it” when it comes to tech policy. I suspect other members pushed him on this, but the final vote (398 to 21) suggests it may not have been a necessary compromise.

Could there be better proof that politicians do not take the internet seriously? Bloggers investigate and break real news, and some very good ones do it for free. I am skeptical the Senate will force the issue in conference committee.