Shumaker actively protects the First Amendment rights of print, television and radio journalists, particularly for the major media outlets in Northwest Ohio.  An important part of our work is to provide these clients with proactive review of controversial materials before they take them public, helping to identify problems that could lead to subpoenas or litigation. We have extensive practical insight into the workings of print, broadcast and online media. We understand a reporter’s or editor’s point of view when weighing legal risks with privacy rights and the public interest.  We will help clients reach the right decisions to accomplish their goals prudently and economically.

What Makes Us Different

We understand that advance review of newspaper articles or broadcast news reports involves high-pressure, time-sensitive concerns that require immediate, yet thorough evaluation.  With our extensive experience in pre-publication and pre-broadcast review, Shumaker has the practical working knowledge of print and broadcast media to avoid potential problems. That includes asking the right questions to help clients substantiate expressed or implied claims in news reports, avoiding unintended innuendo, and advising on the likelihood of challenges. 

Our Clients

  • The largest radio group, and several of the major television stations in Northwest Ohio
  • A national broadcast news network on issues involving the Northwest Ohio media market
  • A major regional newspaper publishing and broadcast company with operations in several key Midwest and Eastern cities

Why You Benefit

Clients rely on us to help shape content to the best-practice policies, standards and guidelines of all media, and to answer any challenges by third parties. We work to ensure that both reporters and their editors understand the legal issues involved with controversial stories and to suggest risk mitigation strategies – recognizing always that the final decision to run a story rests with the client, after receiving sound advice.

Core Services

  • Conduct pre-publication review
  • Make and respond to open meetings, open court or open records requests
  • Respond to subpoenas or other litigation-related concerns
  • Advise on privacy and publicity rights and privileges and the likelihood of challenges
  • Deal expeditiously with publication retraction and correction issues

What You Can Expect From Shumaker

Media clients can expect two things above all from us:  responsiveness and authoritative guidance.  We have the experience to give the kind of practical, effective advice that can avoid problems or offer a credible defense on even the most controversial stories. Our reputation for excellence as experienced media counsel means that our advice is respected by legal professionals and in the court of public opinion, as well as in the usual judicial arenas.

Representative Experience

  • Worked behind the scenes with major Northwest Ohio media outlets, including non-clients, to coordinate efforts on opening court proceedings to the public.
  • Handled Northwest Ohio issues for National ABC legal department, working with Toledo ABC affiliate.
  • Obtained Ohio appellate precedent allowing TV cameras into state court courtrooms.

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