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Here's to 50 years of New York Times v. Sullivan

Reading the New York Times today, I see that it is the 50th anniversary of the Supreme Court decision that helped to define one of our country's defining freedoms -- the freedom of speech.

It's interesting how little has changed in our digital world. The court recognized 50 years ago that public officials had to expect to hear from constituents, even when those constituents were wrong and less than level headed. It's as if Justice Brennan was reading Talkabout in 1964 and recognized that even such an imperfect instrument as this deserved protection.

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.....or as if Sullivan were sitting on the City Council, or Harbor District or............

But Clay, I do sincerely thank you for Talkabout and the way that you manage it to allow as much freedom of expression as possible.


It is a challenge to glean voices.

You have hit a high mark in my view.

The local paper of notice letting their online users shape their online feedback presence.

As editor, you have set an example of inclusiveness that has to be commended.

It is crazy cool how many people know about this and use or contribute to the forum.

It made all the difference in the world to your harbor district coverage.

You in a sense blew the lid off that one.

All by itself that's enough by my measure.

You helped make the right thing happen by both your reportage, and maintaining this venue.

Freedom of speech is right is right!

Thanks for championing that cause.


Yes! You go, Clay! I don't always agree with what is said, but I value that it is being said...in a public forum...in a small town...by its citizens (mostly). Thanks!


There are still many, many rocks that need to be turned over. Wish you had a bigger staff to do investigative reporting because we sure need it.


" The court recognized 50 years ago that public officials had to expect to hear from constituents..."

Public officials should not only expect to hear from constituents, they should also listen to them. It is the public they serve, or should serve, not their personal interests.


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