Don’t expect the NFL to start buying up tapes of players potentially committing crimes anytime in the near future.
This topic has been in the news a lot ever since Kareem Hunt’s incident at a Cleveland residential building, where he appeared to make physical contact with a young woman. The security camera tape was eventually released by TMZ, which resulted in Hunt being cut from the Chiefs.
There has been some speculation about whether or not the league would follow TMZ’s model to protect itself. It didn’t seem likely to begin with, and now we have further proof that’s the case. (RELATED: Here Are The Best Moments Of Week 14 Of The NFL Season)
According to Ian Rapoport, an NFL executive told Todd Jones the league “is not likely at all” to begin buying tapes. The reason why is because they don’t feel like they’ll have the same protections a media outlet like TMZ does.
NFL exec Todd Jones says it’s “not likely at all” to buy evidence videos as @TMZ does. He points out it would open a “Pandora’s box” of issues, while also saying the league doesn’t have journalistic, First Amendment privilege to protect sources.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 12, 2018
I can understand both sides of the issue here. First, I’m not a lawyer, but the league’s belief they don’t have the privilege of protecting sources is probably correct.
They’re not reporters or a news outlet. They’re a professional sports league. It’s not the same. News organizations can do things or people can’t. That’s the reality of the world we live in.
At the same time, I can totally understand why the NFL would at least contemplate the idea or look into it as an option. They’re a multi-billion dollar organization, and they’re going to look at everything on the table necessary to avoid problems.
I’m not saying I would condone them buying up tapes. I’m simply saying it’s foolish to pretend like they wouldn’t consider it. The world can be a crazy place at times, and the NFL can’t love TMZ constantly trying to blow up its spot.
However, I think it’s probably the right call to not get into the same business that TMZ is in.