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In April 2012, the School of Law began publishing the Journal of Media Law & Ethics (ISSN1940-9389), an online, peer-reviewed journal exploring current legal issues facing the media including copyright, defamation and reporters' privilege.

Published quarterly, JMLE seeks theoretical and analytical manuscripts that advance the understanding of media law and ethics in society. Submissions may have a legal, historical, or social science orientation, but must focus on media law or ethics.

            In the current issue, Amar Bakshi provides an in-depth look at the problem of “native advertising,” that is, advertising that looks and feels like editorial copy. While this kind of advertising has been around forever, it poses a particular problem for on-line news publications. Bakshi was a reporter and editor for The Washington Post and CNN and is now at Yale Law School. He examines the power of the Federal Trade Communication to police deceptive practices in this area – at least with regard to commercial messages – and offers some ideas for dealing with sponsored editorial material that does not fit the commercial speech paradigm.

             Next, Professor Kathleen Olson of Lehigh University explores the intersection of publicity rights and protected First Amendment speech with respect to political merchandise, such as posters, pins, and bobblehead dolls. Professor Olson calls for categorical immunity from misappropriation lawsuits for any merchandise using the name or image of a political figure to convey a political message.

             Matthew Beddingfield is a Legal Editor at Bloomberg BNA. He presents an empirical study of collegiate newspapers in Pennsylvania with a view toward measuring their independence from their home institutions. Beddingfield points out that exercising close control over a student newspaper may minimize libel and other publishing torts, but may also increase the risk that the parent institution will be held liable for any torts that the student journalists commit.

             Finally, Professor Jasmine McNealy of the University of Florida tries to sort out the confusing legal landscape for “ride-alongs,” where the media and police cooperate (or collude) to bring the story of an arrest to the public. Professor McNealy focuses on the potential liability of the news media under § 1983 of the Civil Rights Act, which seems to increase in proportion to the degree of participation by the media in planning and executing the arrest. Professor McNealy offers some suggestions for minimizing that potential liability for journalists contemplating engaging in such cooperative action.

All theoretical perspectives are welcome. All manuscripts undergo blind peer review. Access to JMLE is available to the public at no charge.


All manuscripts must be original and must not be under consideration at other journals.

Peer Review:

All manuscripts will undergo blind peer review. The normal review period is three months or less.


The ideal length for submitted papers is 20-30 double-spaced pages (6,000 to 8,000 words using 12-point Times Roman or equivalent type), including footnotes, tables, and figures. Longer manuscripts will be considered when space is available.The submission and review process will be electronic; all manuscripts should be prepared using Microsoft Word or converted to that format. Email should be sent to the editor, Eric B. Easton, professor of law.

Manuscript Preparation:

All footnotes should be in Bluebook form. All text must be double-spaced except tables and figures, which must be "camera-ready." Microsoft Word is the required software program for formatting manuscripts. The title page should include the title of the manuscript, names and affiliations of all authors, as well as their addresses, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses. Five key words for referencing the document in electronic databases are also required. Only the title page should contain identifying information. The second page should include the manuscript title and an abstract of 150 to 250 words. All figures and tables must be formatted to 5.5 inches in width and no more than 7.5 inches in height.

Copyright and Production Notes:

All works submitted must be original and must not have been published elsewhere. Authors of works that are selected for publication shall retain the copyright in their works. However, authors should give the Journal of Media Law & Ethics and the University of Baltimore School of Law a nonexclusive right to publish the work in journals, books, or any other collections that it may publish at the same time or in the future. Authors shall be given credit in such works and will continue to control the copyright in their own works. After a manuscript is accepted for publication, the author or authors are expected to proofread and edit the page proofs when they are provided.


Authors are responsible for obtaining permission from copyright owners to use lengthy quotations (450 words or more) or to reprint or adapt a table or figure that has been published elsewhere. Authors should write to the original copyright holder requesting nonexclusive permission to reproduce the material in this journal and in future publications of the University of Baltimore School of Law.

Email an electronic copy of manuscripts to: Eric Easton, Editor.