Emporia State University (Kansas) ejects media from 'public forum on race,' then apologizes


Wichita Eagle (Bryan Lowry) reports:

Emporia State University officials kicked reporters out of a public forum on race Thursday—a move the university acknowledges likely violated the First Amendment and Kansas open meetings laws.

Reporters were allowed back into the event—which the university had publicized with news releases beforehand—after its general counsel advised university officials to do so. …

Naturally, not all meetings, even at public universities, have to be open to the media. But when something is billed as a public forum, and broadly open and publicized, it's much more likely to be seen as the sort of public meeting that (at public universities) is governed by state open meeting law—and that, under the First Amendment, is open to those who want to write about it as much as to anyone else.

Thanks to the Media Law Resource Center's MediaLawDaily for the pointer.