According to both a trial court and an appeals court in Minnesota, a newspaper breached a contract when it identified a source to whom its reporter promised confidentiality. While American journalists are increasingly identifying confidential sources, imposing contract law is an inadequate remedy because it does not consider journalistic factors such as the story's news value. This Note argues that American courts should adopt the British cause of action for breach of confidence, which balances the source's need for confidentiality against the public's need to know.
Kathryn M. Kase,
When a Promise Is Not a Promise: The Legal Consequences for Journalists Who Break Promises of Confidentiality to Sources,
12 Hastings Comm. & Ent.L.J. 565
Available at: https://repository.uchastings.edu/hastings_comm_ent_law_journal/vol12/iss4/3