Blogs v. Freedom Of Speech: A Commander’s Primer Regarding First Amendment Rights as They Apply to the Blogosphere, Exposition Internationale, 9781249841982


The blogosphere as we know it today is a powerful medium and is growing in readership and creators daily. Just imagine if survivors from the Battle of Gettysburg were able to immediately send their thoughts and first-hand reports to the citizens of a young nation at war. How would public opinion of the war have changed and how would that change have affected the will of the American people? What additional political pressure would these changes have imposed on civilian leadership of the military? The inter-connectedness which the internet provides humans today makes it possible for soldiers in Iraq to do just that — post their thoughts and reflections regarding an upcoming or recently accomplished mission, to include pictures and video, on a blog in Iraq and within seconds this news from the front can be read by thousands if not millions of people world-wide. This relatively new capability gives great power to the blogger and commander alike. The critical take-away for military leaders to understand is our speech within the military is limited for sound reasons and the blogosphere simply presents one more method for those limits to be tested, and one more tool for commanders to lead their troops.

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