Shield law protects newspapers & broadcasters, but not magazines (and bloggers?)

Shield law protects newspapers & broadcasters, but not magazines (and bloggers?): (From AP) “A federal appeals court ruled that Alabama’s shield law does not protect Sports Illustrated from having to identify a confidential source for a defamation suit against the magazine….The three-judge panel, siding with a lower court, held that Alabama’s law specifically mentions protecting newspapers and broadcasters from disclosing confidential sources, but does not mention magazines and therefore does not cover them.”

While I’m not a lawyer, I can’t help but think such a ruling — that a state shield law protects the specific medium and not the journalist — is not a good sign for online journalists (especially those in Alabama), including those who practice journalism via a weblog.