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Law and Disorder - Public Lecture

Wikileaks and the Future of Information Freedom

The Center for Media and Communication Studies and the Open Society Archives at CEU invite you to a public lecture by David McCraw Vice President and Assistant  General Counsel of The New York Times Company 

February 16, 2011, 5:00 p.m.

OSA Archivum 1051 Budapest, Arany J. u. 32.


The uneasy collaboration between Wikileaks and mainstream publishers like The New York Times challenged the fundamental premises that have shaped US press law. The law has long assumed that there are differences between publishers and sources, that publishers will serve as gatekeepers for the information reaching the public, and that the courts will possess the requisite power to punish illicit disclosures of secrets. When those assumptions are destroyed, what remains of the paradigms of law and journalism that have guided mainstream media for at least half a century? David McCraw was the newspaper’s lead attorney in the Wikileaks matter.
He will discuss howThe Times dealt with the legal and journalistic uncertainties that the paper faced when it received the Wiki-leaks documents and where US law and journalism may be headed in the wake of the Wikileaks revolution.  

David McCraw is Vice President and Assistant General Counsel of The New York Times Company, where he is responsible for newsroom legal affairs and serves as lead legal counsel for The Times’ freedom-of-information litigation.  He has success-fully represented the newspaper in lawsuits leading to the release of thousands of pages of government documents concerning rescue efforts in New York City on 9/11, the U.S. Defense Department’s secret campaign to influence public opinion during the war in Iraq, and unsafe American work-places.  McCraw also oversees the news-paper’s international libel docket, which has included lawsuits in England, Greece, Germany, Indonesia, China, and Iraq. He has served as a consultant to the drafters of freedom-of-information laws in Yemen and Kuwait and has conducted workshops on press freedom issues in various countries in the Middle East, South America, and Eastern Europe.  He was honored in 2010 by the New York City Bar association for his global pro bono work.
OSA Director István Rév will also introduce the OSA Leaks project in conjunction with the lecture.

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