House Passes Law Shielding Bloggers

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The House passed the Free Flow of Information Act of 2007 on Tuesday, a federal shield bill that would protect reporters from having to divulge their confidential sources in federal court.

House Passes Law Shielding Bloggers
House Passes Law Shielding Bloggers

The bill passed with overwhelming support by a vote of 398-21.

"In the past few years, there have been too many instances where the pendulum has swung against the free flow of information and in favor of the government," House Minority Whip Roy Blunt, R-Mo., said on the House floor.

"I was troubled by the instances I’ve seen where reporters have been jailed or threatened with jail for simply protecting their sources."

The Whitehouse is less than thrilled with the passage of the bill and is likely to veto it saying that it could harm national security.

The Whitehouse issued a statement saying, "It is likely that the legislation will encourage more leaks of classified information by giving leakers such a formidable shield behind which they can hide."

The Society Of Professional Journalists were pleased with the passage of the bill saying, "Today’s vote in the House is a victory for a free press and for the American people as much as journalists," SPJ President Clint Brewer said.

"This law is in the interest of democracy. Journalists must be able to protect confidential sources in order to truly report on the operations of our government." They also pointed out that the bill offers protection for bloggers and freelancers.

House Passes Law Shielding Bloggers
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