'Courier-Journal' Sportswriter Loses Credential For Game Due to Blogging

By: Joe Strupp A sportswriter for The Courier-Journal in Louisville, Ky. had his press pass revoked and was ordered to leave a press box during a NCAA baseball tournament Sunday because he was providing online updates, the paper reported today. Brian Bennett allegedly violated a NCAA policy prohibiting such updates from its championship games, the paper said.

"Gene McArtor, a representative of the NCAA baseball committee, approached [Bennett] at the University of Louisville's Jim Patterson Stadium in the bottom of the fifth inning in the U of L-Oklahoma State game," the paper reported, adding that McArtor informed Bennett that blogging from such a championship event "is against NCAA policies. We're revoking the credential and need to ask you to leave the stadium."

Courier-Journal executive editor Bennie L. Ivory claimed the NCAA action was inappropriate and said the newspaper would likely respond.

"It's clearly a First Amendment issue," Ivory said in the paper. "This is part of the evolution of how we present the news to our readers. It's what we did during the Orange Bowl. It's what we did during the NCAA basketball tournament. It's what we do."

But the paper noted that the university had issued a memo on Friday, which said blogs are considered a "live representation of the game" and that any blog reporting action photos or game reports would be prohibited. "In essence, no blog entries are permitted between the first pitch and the final out of each game," the memo said.


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