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RTDNA Joins Free Press Groups in Tracking First Amendment Abuse

Furthering its efforts around the First Amendment, the Radio Television Digital News Association has joined more than 20 organizations in launching the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker, a website dedicated to documenting abuses against journalists.

The tracker is a repository of data tracking incidents—arrests of journalists, equipment searches and physical attacks among them—“at a time when journalists in the U.S. are facing increasing hostility,” RTDNA said. 

Reporters covering protests in Washington and North Dakota, for instance, are among 19 journalists charged with crimes so far this year. Ten are currently facing charges, RTDNA said.

Twelve journalists have been subject to equipment searches, and 10 have been physically attacked, the tracker shows.

The tracker shows data collected from news reports and submissions. The Columbia Journalism Review, Investigative Reporters & Editors and Knight First Amendment Institute are among partnering organizations.

RTNDA’s support of the tracker is part of the group’s larger multi-faceted initiative fighting the range of threats, from limits to ugly rhetoric, that impede journalists from doing their jobs. The group launched a First Amendment task force earlier this year.