Blam-o! In probably one of the most awesome court orders we’ve ever read on the side of what is truthful and just in fair reportage, the judge in the Oracle vs. Google case has ordered that both sides disclose which journalists, bloggers and any other press they paid for coverage.
In other news, the First Amendment begins to shine a little more brightly today.
As reported by the Verge, paidcontent.org, Yahoo! News and others, U.S. District Judge William Alsup issued the order earlier today, instructing that “each side and its counsel shall file a statement herein clear identifying all authors, journalists, commentators or bloggers who have reported or commented on any issues in this case and who have received money (other than normal subscription fees) from the party or its counsel during the pendency of this action.”
Both sides have agreed to comply, with an Oracle spokesperson responding to the Verge, “Oracle has always disclosed all of its financial relationships in this matter, and it is time for Google to do the same. We read this order to also include indirect payments to entities who, in turn, made comments on behalf of Google.”
The companies have until Friday, Aug. 17, to provide the court their pay-for-play lists. One person known to be on the list is blogger Florian Mueller of FOSS Patents, a commenter on the case who is openly paid by Oracle and Microsoft.
For any of you kids out there who need a lesson in Journalism 101, here goes: Taking money, or being paid, by any outside corporate interest other than your news employer (say, if you’re lucky, the New York Times Co., if you’re not so lucky, News Corp.), means that you are no longer a journalist. You are in PR. Oh, and you’re also probably an asshat for getting the two mixed up.
Here’s the full order below (note the all caps/bold awesomeness of “It is so ordered.” I will be using this for the rest of the night):