SEJ Joins Groups in Support of Argus Leader Media

On March 25, 2019, the Society of Environmental Journalists joined the Reporters Committee on Freedom of the Press (RCFP) and 35 other journalism organizations in filing an amicus brief in support of the Argus Leader in Food Marketing Institute v. Argus Leader, which is currently before the US Supreme Court.

This case involves the interpretation of the Freedom of Information Act's "trade secrets" exemption — something environmental reporters run up against frequently.

In the case, the Food Media Institute claims an expansive interpretation of trade secrets, amounting to any undisclosed information which could harm it.

The Sioux Falls Argus Leader and the media coalition argue that this interpretation is so broad as to be dangerous to the public interest. The newspaper is seeking store-level food-stamp redemption data, saying the public has a right to know how federal money is spent.

The following groups signed on:

American Society of News Editors
The Associated Press
Associated Press Media Editors
Association of Alternative Newsmedia
California News Publishers Association
Californians Aware
The E.W. Scripps Company
First Amendment Coalition
First Look Media Works, Inc.
Inter American Press Association
Investigative Reporting Workshop at American University
Los Angeles Times Communications LLC
The McClatchy Company
The Media Institute
Media Law Resource Center
MPA – The Association of Magazine Media
National Newspaper Association
The National Press Club
National Press Club Journalism Institute
National Press Photographers Association
National Public Radio, Inc.
New England First Amendment Coalition
The New York Times Company
News Media Alliance
The NewsGuild - CWA
Online News Association
Radio Television Digital News Association
Reporters Without Borders
Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting
Society of Environmental Journalists
Society of Professional Journalists
South Dakota Newspaper Association
Tully Center for Free Speech