Debate Over Fairness of News Media
The federal government and the country's purveyors of news are currently engaged in one of those contests of wills that have so often marked their relations since the nation was founded. However, television gives the present contest a new dimension. As broadcasters of news, TV and radio are partners of the press, but as government-licensed enterprises they are somewhat less free than the press. Only months before the news media came under attack from Vice President Spiro T. Agnew, the Supreme Court denied the long-standing contention of radio-television journalists that they had the same First Amendment rights as other newsmen.
“Differences in news media justify differences in First Amendment standards applied to them,” Justice Byron R. White said on behalf ...