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Free press versus the law

Jason Norwood-Young
Jason Norwood-Young
2020-06-26

Dictators, fraudsters, and politicians take note: A great way to fight the free press and stop those annoying journalists from cutting into your profits is to simply sue them. The shocking news that the court case against Rappler’s Maria Ressa in the Philippines was found guilty of libel has sent chilling reverberations around the world. Much closer to home, a “lawfare” attack on independent publication GroundUp and Raymond Joseph facing frivolous cases that, while they have little chance of success, bog the journalists and publishers down, and of course cost a lot of money. If you can, please support GroundUp here, Rappler here, or your favourite local independent news publisher.

Jason Norwood-Young
  • Journalist, developer, community builder, newsletter creator and international man of mystery, Jason was one of the first South Africans to really grasp the importance of data in the newsroom and has remained one step ahead of the trends in the field all the way. Even Naked Data was conceived before email newsletters were cool again. But what does that tell you about the measure of the man? Nothing, that's what. He hides the superman CV behind a truly mild-mannered and overly modest persona and is best described as "one of the nicest guys in the business". When he's angry, it is righteously so, and his anger always wears velvet mittens. The true signs of his genius include the ability to create multilingual puns on demand (witness the alternative Naked Data strap "Putting the heita in to data") and the fact that he offered me a job. (AO)

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