|(photo by Stephanie Koi)|
The very American question is: who do you sue? And if one Hawaiian legislator, with a shaky grasp of the US Constitution, had had his way, the answer would have been the publisher who printed the guidebook from which you got your travel suggestions.
Thankfully the latest attack on first amendment rights, Hawaii House Bill 548, has died in committee. It was vigorously opposed by the trade group Media Coalition. After the victory, Publisher's Weekly quoted CEO of the organization as saying "Holding authors and publishers financially liable for the actions of readers and private landowners will have a substantial chilling effect on them. They would inevitably limit what they wrote or what images they included in their guide books or on guide website to avoid the possibility of a lawsuit.” But he also went on to warn that the bill could be resurrected, as the Hawaiian legislator has a two-year session.
Let's hope this particular bill R.I.P.