Knight Foundation: A news industry ‘less able’ to defend freedom

Not all that long ago, a Florida state law told newspapers what they could publish.

A political candidate could have equal space in a newspaper to reply to criticism. It did not matter if the criticism was true and the reply was false. Equal time was the rule on TV. Florida thought it should apply to newspapers.

Jack Knight’s Miami Herald disagreed. So did the U.S. Supreme Court, unanimously. In 1974, in Miami Herald Publishing Co. v. Tornillo, the court overturned the state law. It was a notable example of the newspaper industry standing up not just for the free press, but for the rights of everyone. Continue…