Is the News Free?

by Latoya Peterson

I did a quick piece for WireTap about Laura Ling and Euna Lee, after I went to the vigil.

Last night, over fifty people gathered at Freedom Plaza in Washington D.C. to hold a candlelight vigil for imprisoned journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee. The two reporters for Current TV were in China filming a piece on sex trafficking when they inadvertently crossed the border into North Korea. They were detained by North Korean forces and have been awaiting trial for the last three months. The trial began today and there is still no word on the fate of the two journalists. […]

Ling and Lee’s work is invaluable to what I do as a media maker. As we enter a world where corporate interests often trump stories that impact every day people, Current TV’s work developing user generated content and training citizens to become journalists is rapidly emerging as a model to follow to keep citizens engaged in their communities.

But, it is like the old truism: Nothing in life comes for free. In the process of fighting for truth, we have to dig deeper and go to places we never thought we’d go, often at the risk of running afoul of authorities who would rather this information was not released. I read an article published in the Guardian newspaper a few weeks ago where the writer noted that with all the monitoring of digital sites and email addresses that investigative journalists would be wise to adopt the tactics of drug dealers to keep their sources safe.

Read the rest.