A reader poll: What would you have done about a federal subpoena for online reader comments?


By now you may have heard that the Review-Journal was subpoenaed for information — names, addresses, IP addresses, credit card numbers, etc. — about people who posted online comments about a story that appeared in the paper last month.

The story was about a businessman who is on trial, accused of tax fraud for paying contractors with gold and silver coins based on their precious metal value but using the much smaller face value for tax purposes. At last count there were 175 comments appended to the story.

I  revealed the existence of the subponea in a Sunday column. There was a follow up story in today's paper.

Since then there has been a lot of talk about what the paper should do in response to the subpoena. The ACLU is involved. Lots of attorneys for both sides are involved.

It is a fundamental First Amendment vs. vs. Fourth Amendment s. Sixth Amendment issue.

Emotions are running high.

View the results.