The UB Law in Focus Discussion Series continues in September with two webinars that examine topics of current interest through a legal lens.
On Sept. 16 at 5 p.m., the topic will be “Misinformation, Disinformation and ‘Fake News.'” This webinar will serve as UB’s annual commemoration of Constitution Day, which is Sept. 17.
Misinformation and disinformation have always been part of our media landscape, going back to the scurrilous political campaigns of the 18th century, the great newspaper hoaxes of the 19th century, and Nazi and Soviet propaganda of the 20th century.
What has made these phenomena so troubling in the 21st century is the amplification effect of the internet, especially social media. This discussion will address the issue of misinformation, disinformation and “fake news,” including their definition, sources and the harms they create, as well as what, if anything, can be done about them consistent with the First Amendment.
Panelists are Eric Easton, media law expert and professor emeritus at UB Law; Jasmine McNealy, assistant professor of telecommunication at the University of Florida; and UB Law alumna Sandy Banisky, J.D. ’93, a journalism professor at the University of Maryland College Park and former editor at The Baltimore Sun.
On Wednesday, Sept. 30 at 5, the webinar topic will be “Civil Disobedience, Democracy and Structural Racism: What’s Federalism Got to Do with It?” This webinar continues our series-within-a-series, Examining Structural Racism.
Protests, marches and demonstrations–signature acts of a democracy–have exploded around the country. Demonstrators call for a reassessment of law enforcement methods and redirecting of resources. What does federalism demand as the response to these acts of peaceful (and not peaceful) protests?
A panel of UB Law faculty–Prof. Matthew Lindsay, an expert in American legal history and constitutional law; Prof. Robert Knowles, an expert in national security law; and Prof. Odeana Neal, an expert in juvenile justice–will consider the distinct yet overlapping areas of local, state and federal governments’ relationship to historical and present-day structural racism.
The balancing of these distinct jurisdictions–local, state, and federal–is core to the principle of federalism. What are the principles that should guide the proper response to the demonstrations that respects democracy and freedom of expression?
Moderating the discussion will be Veryl Pow, a clinical teaching fellow at UB Law and an expert in criminal justice and social movement lawyering. Register for the webinar here.
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