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Each year, the University of Kansas School of Law and the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association Media Law Committee host the Media and the Law Seminar in Kansas City, along with other local events, to facilitate and encourage dialogue about the latest legal issues and developments in media, law and technology.

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Each year, the University of Kansas School of Law and the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association's Media Law Committee sponsor the Media and the Law Seminar in Kansas City to facilitate national dialogue about the latest legal issues and developments in media, law, and technology. For lawyers who attend, the seminar is an opportunity to identify and assess laws and court rulings that affect expressive freedom and to examine professional standards and practices for effective First Amendment advocacy. The seminar also is open to non-lawyers, including students and teachers. For them, the seminar is an opportunity to enrich their understanding of government actions and technological developments that may impede or advance citizens' exercise of their First Amendment rights.

Caught in the Web: Social Media, Privacy and You(Tube)

33rd Annual Virtual Media and the Law Seminar

April 14-16, 2021
Virtual event

The University of Kansas School of Law and the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association Media Law Committee host the Media and the Law Seminar to facilitate and encourage dialogue about the latest legal issues and developments in media, law and technology. The 2021 seminar will feature topics, such as:

  • All the World’s a (Public) Stage: Is a Viral Figure a Public Figure?
  • Area of Influence: Risks and Rewards of the Emerging Social Media Marketplace
  • Transparency in the time of COVID: Strategies for Effective Fact-Finding During a Global Pandemic
  • Takedown Shakedown
  • Implicit Bias in the Media: What Are Our Obligations as Journalists, Editors, and Counsel?
  • So Close, Yet So Far Away: Ethics in the Cloud

Join us on Wednesday, April 14, 2021 from 4:00-5:45 p.m. for the bonus CLE session: Defamation 101: Back to the Basics. The bonus session is included in the cost of the seminar (2 hours CLE). 

Register online  

 


CLE Credit 

The Kansas CLE Commission has approved nine CLE credit hours, including one hour of ethics. New York and California have also approved nine CLE credit hours, including one hour of ethics. Missouri CLE Commission has approved nine CLE credit hours, including two hours of ethics (which includes one hour of explicit or implicit bias, diversity, inclusion, or cultural competency credit). For other states, a Certificate of Completion will be available once the event is completed.

Note: To receive the full nine hours of CLE credit, attendees must be logged into the sessions and be fully engaged. Each panel will contain a unique question that attendees must answer to register their involvement.

Schedule

Wednesday, April 14

3:00 – 4:45 p.m. (CST)
Bonus Session 2 hours CLE
Defamation 101 – Back to the Basics

This panel will be presented via point/counterpoint by lawyers acting as defense and plaintiff’s counsel, running through and engaging the audience on classic defamation claim issues, including:

  • How do you advise reporters when a hot/risky story arises?
  • How do you advise reporters on not stopping the news and facilitating publication?
  • How do you manage the blitzkrieg that results from publication?
  • How do you litigate the case through the dismissal stage, summary judgment, trial, and appeal?
  • How do you deal with the external optics?

Moderators:

  • Blaine Kimrey, Shareholder, Vedder Price, Chicago, IL
  • Bernie Rhodes, Partner, Lathrop GPM, Kansas City, MO

Thursday, April 15

11:00 a.m. – Noon (CST)
Panel 1
All the World’s a (Public) Stage: Is a Viral Figure a Public Figure?

Drawing on recent high-profile cases, such as the Covington Catholic High School students’ lawsuits over coverage of their run-in with other demonstrators at the Lincoln memorial, this panel will analyze the current and future state of the limited-purpose public-figure doctrine from both an academic and practical perspective, including the following:

  • In a world when everyone has access to publishing tools, has the baseline changed for what constitutes “dancing out onto the public stage?”
  • Does participating in public meetings or protests make someone a limited-purpose public figure?
  • What is the role of the involuntary limited-purpose public figure doctrine in today’s communication landscape?
  • What lessons can be drawn from notable recent cases such as the Covington Catholic and Joy Reid lawsuits, as well as new cases involving the 2020 election fraud allegations?
  • What does this issue tell us overall about the future of New York Times v. Sullivan?

Moderator:
Lyrissa Lidsky,
University of Missouri, Dean of Law School, Columbia, MO

Panelists:

  • Michael J. Grygiel, Shareholder and Co-Chair, National Media and Entertainment Litigation Practice, Greenberg Traurig, LLP, Albany, NY
  • Jane Kirtley, Director and Professor, Silha Center for the Study of Media Ethics and Law, University of Minnesota Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communications/ Law School, Minneapolis, MN
  • The Hon. Deanell Reece Tacha, former Chief Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and former Dean of Pepperdine University School of Law, Lawrence, KS

1:00 – 2:00 p.m. (CST)
Panel 2
Area of Influence: Risks and Rewards of the Emerging Social Media Marketplace

This panel will discuss emerging entrepreneurs in the booming social media “influencer” economy and explore how savvy brands are harnessing the power of this new marketplace. As part of the conversation, we will explain how the social media commercial ecosystem works, and who is driving its expansion. Our panelists will share their opinions on ways established brands and publishers can take advantage of this new form of advertising while mitigating risk. Discussion topics include:

  • What is curated sponsored content and how is it created and managed?
  • What are the pitfalls in creating brand partnerships with influencers?
  • What risks are best mitigated through insurance?
  • What regulatory trends may impact social media marketing?
  • How does a company combat the potential for fraud in social media marketing?

Moderator:
Natalie Harris,
Partner, Baron Harris Healey, Chicago, IL

Panelists:

  • Liz Hawks, Senior Vice President and Partner, FleishmanHillard, Kansas City, MO
  • Kasim Hardaway, Culinary + Lifestyle Influencer & Recipe Developer, Partner at Cultivare Greens and Grains, Kansas City, MO
  • Angie Read, Senior Communications Manager, Corporation Communications, H&R Block, Kansas City, MO

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. (CST)
Panel 3
Transparency in the time of COVID: Strategies for Effective Fact-Finding During a Global Pandemic

One year into the pandemic, hear from both journalists and in-house counsel on both challenges over the last year and the evolution of newsgathering now that vaccines are being distributed. From encouraging responses to records requests, to challenging bogus HIPAA claims, to finding and interviewing sources, what does COVID-19's past, present, and future mean for journalists? The panel will also cover questions including:

  • How can journalists push back when government agencies say they can't respond to records requests?
  • What privacy issues should journalists consider when reporting on COVID-19 healthcare and vaccines?
  • Who does HIPAA apply to, what does the Privacy Rule cover, and when do exceptions apply?
  • How can journalists find information and protect source relationships given massive changes in workplaces' functionality?

Moderator:
Adam A. Marshall, Senior Staff Attorney, Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, Washington, D.C.

Panelists:

  • Sydney Lupkin, Pharmaceuticals Correspondent, National Public Radio, Washington, D.C.
  • Brian Barrett, Assistant General Counsel, Associated Press, New York, NY
  • Nidhi Subbaraman, Senior Reporter, Nature, Washington, D.C.

Friday, April 16

11:00 am – Noon (CST)
Panel 4
Takedown Shakedown

This panel will examine the challenges facing traditional and digital media from demands to take down stories published on their websites. These demands often involve well-vetted stories but are seen as unflattering or an invasion of privacy by the subject. They may have been correct at the time of the publication, but circumstances have changed. The panelists will discuss the legal and ethical consequences of disregarding the takedown demand, the legal/ethical considerations of dealing with requests from minors and some ways of dealing with the business realities. The panel features in-house and corporate counsel involved in both pre- and post-publication vetting, and who are consulted daily on corporate policy and applying it to individual situations. Subjects discussed include:

  • What are the legal implications arising from a request to takedown or modify a story?
  • What are the privacy concerns related to posting of stories?
  • How do the legal requirements intersect with the journalistic ethical issues?
  • If a request to take a story down or modify it is granted what are the implications for the statute of limitations?
  • If the request to takedown or modify a story is not granted what are the implications for libel litigation that follows?
  • We will examine some state statutes regulating takedowns.

Moderator:
Dana J. McElroy,
Partner, Thomas & LoCicero, Fort Lauderdale, FL

Panelists:

  • Julie Anderson, Editor-in-Chief, Orlando Sentinel, Orlando, FL and South Florida Sun Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • David Bralow, Senior Vice President/Law, First Look Media and Legal Director for the Press Freedom Defense Fund, New York, NY
  • Elizabeth Ryder, Executive Vice President & General Counsel, Nexstar Media Group, Inc., Irving, TX

1:00 – 2:00 p.m. (CST)
Panel 5
Implicit Bias in the Media: What Are Our Obligations as Journalists, Editors, and Counsel?

Implicit or unconscious biases pervade all aspects of our lives and society. They develop as a natural function of our minds as we make the quick assessments necessary in daily living. Unconscious attitudes and stereotypes can lead to damaging behaviors that contribute to systemic prejudice and discrimination, which can detrimentally impact generations of people. Media organizations, journalists and their attorneys are not immune from implicit bias, which can influence business operations and media content. This panel will examine how the media, journalists, and their attorneys can be more mindful of implicit and unconscious biases in making more enlightened operational, editorial, and legal decisions. Among the issues to be considered are:

  • Why did segregated media arise and does it still exist today? What impact does a segregated media have on the communities it serves?
  • What is the impact on the community when black publications such as Jet, Ebony and the Chicago Defender shutter their doors?
  • How does the contraction of mainstream media publishers impact coverage in minority communities?
  • What are the key issues facing the Latinix communities that are left unaddressed by mainstream media?
  • To what extent do female journalists still face sexism when reporting on traditional male domains, such as sports?
  • To what extent do implicit biases negatively impact hiring, promotion, and other employment decisions within media organizations?
  • What influence do advertisers have in perpetuating implicit biases and how can their influence be checked?
  • What ethical and legal obligations do editors, in-house counsel and outside attorneys have to identify and mitigate implicit biases?

Moderator:
Dionne M. King,
CEO and Strategic Consultant, DMK Consults LLC, Kansas City, MO

Panelists:

  • Jonathan H. Anschell, Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Counsel, Mattel, Inc., Los Angeles, CA
  • Julie DiCaro Sports journalist and editor at Deadspin, former attorney, Chicago, IL
  • Mary Sanchez, Syndicated columnist, Tribune, Kansas City, MO
  • Lisa Benson, Winning Truths International, LLC; Founder and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Anti-racism Consultant; author of "Anchored in Bias" and Formerly Emmy Award winning TV journalist, Kansas City, MO

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. (CST)
Panel 6
So Close, Yet So Far Away: Ethics in the Cloud

The Media and their attorneys face immense new ethical and legal threats by storing data on remote servers owned and operated by others, also referred to as, “stashing in the Cloud.” This technology has revolutionized how journalists and media attorneys maintain and access notes, documents, source materials and other investigative records. At the same time, reporting is becoming increasingly data-driven with many journalists becoming data analysts and curators. As result, there are enormous amounts of information to store and protect from hackers and authorities. While accessing data on the go has never been more convenient, the legal and ethical risks have never been greater. In this ethics session you will learn real world, practical solutions for working in the cloud while avoiding ethical violations and legal liability, and how to help your clients do the same. Subjects covered include:

  • How do you avoid ethical pitfalls while working with media clients in the cloud?
  • What is best practice when advising journalists who stash sensitive information the cloud?
  • Do media attorneys have an ethical obligation to advise journalists on security and privacy issues during newsroom training sessions?
  • How much does a media attorney have to know about cloud technology and cyber security to advise and represent media clients on issues involving the Cloud.
  • What are the legal and ethical issues involved when a journalist gets a subpoena for confidential source data stored in the cloud? Are the issues different if the subpoena is also served on the cloud provider? What if the journalist is an independent contractor?
  • How important is due diligence before selecting a cloud provider for your legal practice?
  • What should an attorney look for when reviewing and negotiating contracts for media clients with a cloud provider?
  • Can you maintain attorney-client privilege and ensure the confidentiality of media client files while working in the cloud? What are your ethical obligations in the event of a breach?
  • What are real world, practical solutions for utilizing the cloud to transmit sensitive information?
  • How do you institute internal controls in your office to prevent unauthorized access to client data?

Moderator:
Jonathan Peters,
Associate Professor, Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication/School of Law, the University of Georgia, Athens, GA

Panelists:

  • Stephen K. Doig, Professor, Cronkite School of Journalism, Arizona State University, Seattle, WA
  • Jane Kirtley, Director and Professor, Silha Center for the Study of Media Ethics and Law, University of Minnesota Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communications/ Law School, Minneapolis, MN
  • Mark Sableman, Partner, Thompson Coburn LLP, St. Louis, MO

Note to Media and the Law Seminar attendees: Below are descriptions of panel topics plus outlines of written materials that are available on the Media and the Law Seminar web site.

Caught in the Web: Social Media, Privacy and You(Tube)

33rd Annual Virtual Media and the Law Seminar

April 14-16, 2021
Virtual event


Bonus Session – Defamation 101: Back to the Basics

What does the day-to-day life of a media lawyer really look like? This panel will be presented via point/counterpoint by lawyers acting as defense and plaintiff’s counsel, running through and engaging the audience on classic defamation claim issues from pre-publication through trial and appeal. The session will also cover practical advice on dealing with external optics that could impact your case.

Virtual Speaker’s Dinner

Dave Jorgenson, Video Producer, The Washington Post
April 14, 2021 5:30 p.m. CST, presentation begins 6 p.m. CST

The speaker’s dinner event is traditionally hosted by AXIS Insurance on the night before the seminar, following the bonus session. All seminar panelists and attendees are invited to join. This year, due to the virtual nature of the seminar, the speaker’s dinner will be hosted by AXIS virtually at 5:30 (CST) on Wednesday, April 14. Prior to the featured speaker’s presentation, attendees are invited to participate in networking and discussion time.

Dave Jorgenson is a video producer, editor and writer for “The Department of Satire” and various scripted series for The Washington Post. In the last two years, he launched The Post’s TikTok account. He posts 5-6 TikTok videos a week and has grown the account from zero to more than 900,000 followers since May 2019. Dave will be speaking at the speaker’s dinner event on Wednesday, April 14 at 6 p.m. CST.

Sponsors

The Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association Media Law Committee and University of Kansas School of Law

2020 Sustaining Contributors

Thank you to the following 2020 contributors who graciously allowed us to retain their allocation for the 2020 Media and the Law Seminar, despite that Seminar’s cancelation due to COVID-19. These contributions helped us cover our costs and have enabled us to keep the Seminar going this year.

  • AXIS Insurance
  • Ballard Spahr LLP
  • Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
  • Cowan, DeBaets, Abrahams & Sheppard LLP
  • Fox Rothschild LLP
  • Greenan, Peffer, Sallander & Lally, LLP
  • Haynes and Boone, LLP
  • Intact Insurance Entertainment/One Beacon
  • Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP
  • KU School of Law Media, Law and Technology Program
  • Lathrop GPM
  • Mandell Menkes LLC
  • Prince, Lobel, Tye, LLP
  • Satterlee Stephens LLP
  • Thomas & LoCicero PL
  • Vedder Price P.C.
  • Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis LLP

2021 Contributors

  • AXIS Insurance
  • Baker & Hostetler LLP
  • Ballard Spahr LLP
  • Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
  • Duane Morris LLP
  • Fox Rothschild LLP
  • Frost Brown Todd LLC
  • Greenan, Peffer, Sallander & Lally, LLP
  • Haynes and Boone, LLP
  • Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP
  • KU School of Law Media, Law and Technology Program
  • Lathrop GPM
  • Mandell Menkes LLC
  • Mintz & Gold LLP
  • Prince Lobel Tye, LLP
  • Stevens & Brand LLP
  • Thomas & LoCicero PL
  • Vedder Price P.C.
  • Waller Law

Coordinated by

University of Kansas Lifelong & Professional Education


Payment is required at the time of registration. Only registrations accompanied with payment will be accepted. Please register in advance. 

Online registration is preferred, but if you need to register by phone, you can call one of our Registration Specialists at the number below:

Register by Phone
785-864-5823 or 877-404-5823 (toll free)

Register by TDD
800-766-3777

Past Seminars

202020192018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 
2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 
2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003

Return to 2020 seminar page