Reporters and editors will find "The Journalist's Handbook on Libel and Privacy" a valuable addition to their personal library. The author breathes life into otherwise dry and complicated legal decisions by examining the newspaper and television stories behind the court battles; what journalists did right and where they went wrong in writing about both the renowned and the unknown who sued the news media.
The handbook was not meant for lawyers, who may find the legal analysis too simplistic at times, and it won't help legal researchers--it doesn't even have case citations to help readers find the decisions in the law library. But there are already enough legal texts on this subject on the market. This practical, easy-to-understand guide will help journalists understand what can get them into trouble and how to keep out of court.
"Report only what you know and let the reader know how you know it," Dill advises. She reports what you'll never find in the published court decisions--who settled libel and invasion of privacy cases and how much they paid. Most helpful is a 56-page compilation of common questions asked by reporters. The answers contain some practical tips and explain when its best to call a local lawyer for assistance.