So you are a hot shot reporter with a big scoop. You have information from a “source” that you refuse to reveal to the feds. There was a time that you’d find a subpoena at your desk to get you to cough up your sources. Now the feds feel like they don’t have to spend the time harassing reporters to give up their sources.
The Miami Herald reports:
As a national security representative told Lucy Dalglish, director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, “We’re not going to subpoena reporters in the future. We don’t need to. We know who you’re talking to.”
“Just think about that: issuing subpoenas to journalists to force them to reveal their sources is now obsolete — unnecessary — because the U.S. Government’s Surveillance State is so vast, so comprehensive, that it already knows who is talking to whom.”
Reporters used to be the so-called fourth branch of the government. Keeping an eye on, and reporting on, the government. Now the government is keeping an eye on the reporters.