Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Wolf vs. the Balco reporters

Josh Wolf (left), who is in a federal prison for refusing to provide a grand jury with videotape he shot of a political protest, says the government is treating him differently than Chronicle reporters Lance Williams (in photo at right, he's on the left) and Mark Fainaru-Wada (right), who have also been found in contempt of court. In the case of the Chron reporters, they are refusing to name their source of grand jury transcripts in the Barry Bonds steroids case. Wolf, in an interview with Democracy Now's Amy Goodman, says there isn't much difference in the cases. "It clearly shows how the government's deciding to deal with corporate media versus an independent journalist, is that they've said [to the Chronicle reporters], well, we're not going to make you go to jail until the Ninth District rules one way or the other, and then the Ninth District's hearings have been pushed back and pushed back and pushed back. Mine, on the other hand -- I was escorted into custody from the courtroom the day I was ruled in contempt."
    AMY GOODMAN: Josh, what has been the response of the journalistic community in this country to your incarceration?

    JOSH WOLF: It's difficult for me to gauge what the journalistic response is. I obviously don't have internet access or anything like that in here. I do get the newspaper, and the San Francisco Chronicle's covered this story quite well. I’ve been told that it's been a sort of lackluster response. I’m not entirely sure why that is. But it seems to me that part of it may be that the existing news media doesn't want to acknowledge that independent journalists who don't rely on television stations or large-scale newspapers or anything like that really are an additional form of journalism that's part of the media today.

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