Southwestern Law School Conference on Global Freedom of Information Laws

Today too many conferences are becoming just too big. Thousand of attendees. Thousands of papers. Huge hotel with hundreds of conference rooms. Often times, too many people try to connect to the same Wi-Fi at the same time. The huge traffic brings the Wi-Fi completely down. Every participant is busy because he or she, Continue reading


Global Right to Information Rating

Freedom of information laws allow citizens constitutional and/or statutory right of access to records and files held by government agencies. More than 100 countries/regions in the world have various right to information legislations. United States Freedom of Information Act has long been regarded as a model for other countries to emulate. The law, however, is far less effective than many people might assume. United States was placed at 45th out of more than 100 countries and regions with access to information laws, according to a global ranking designed to assess effectiveness of freedom of information laws. The rating was made by Access Info Europe (AIE) and the Centre for Law and Democracy (CLD). The rating shows that United States received 89 points out of a possible total score of 150. The higher score, the better.

You can view the rating here. You can view the country data presented in bar chart here. The rating evaluates each country’s freedom of information law according to 61 indicators. Below is the screenshot of the bar chart.



Online privacy collides with right to know | Opinion | The Register-Guard | Eugene, Oregon

We are seeing a conflict between freedom of expression/the press and right to be forgotten. What’s the solution? “The truth seems to lie somewhere in between.” A very insightful and timely Op-ed piece by my friend Dr. Kyu Ho Youm:

Online privacy collides with right to know | Opinion | The Register-Guard | Eugene, Oregon.

“不算违法,德行有亏” —“毕福剑事件”如果发生在美国的法理和道德分析



近日,毕福剑不雅视频风波在国内舆论场持续发酵。对于事件主角“毕姥爷”,同情者有之,辱骂者有之。好几位国内朋友问我,你在美国教新闻法,如果类似事件发生在美国,结果会怎样?换句话说,如果毕福剑在美国某主流电视台娱乐节目做主持人,在餐馆聚餐时,大骂美国国父乔治·华盛顿和他领导的北美大陆军,骂人视频被好事者传到网上,结果会如何?下面就从美国新闻传播法和伦理道德的角度聊聊。 Continue reading

Internationally recognized media law scholar will come to Western to discuss New York Times V. Sullivan

Dr. Kyu Ho Youm, Western Illinois University Spring 2015 Journalism Day Keynote Speaker Kyu_3

What: Spring 2015 Journalism Day Keynote Speech (title: “The First Amendment Is Only for A Free Press in America?: New York Times V. Sullivan’s Impact on Ethical Journalism”)  

Who: Continue reading

Western Courier editor: suspension and reinstatement

For Nicholas Stewart, the beginning of spring 2015 semester seemed a dramatic one. As the editor-in-chief of the Western Courier, the student newspaper of Western Illinois University, Stewart was suspended from his post and then quickly reinstated by the university.

Continue reading

How to properly attribute Creative Commons-licensed images

Journalism students should avoid just grabbing pictures from Google searches and posting them on their blogs. By doing so, they would very likely create copyright problems for themselves. The best option is to use Creative Commons-licensed images. Let’s see, I want to find a picture of Western Illinois University from Creative Commons and post it to my blog. Here is what I would do: Continue reading

Hello world!

This is my very first post on! I started this blog to establish my digital brand as a journalist-turned-educator. It’s a place for journalistic experimentation and innovation.

It’s also a place to showcase Continue reading