John Wolf spent 226 days in jail to protect his videos and sources, and caused the creation of a new law protecting video-bloggers. Now Sierra Choi is directing and producing a documentary - the trailer is here as part of my video blog.
At the time in 2006, I met Josh when he worked for the television division at Peralta Community College. He was also in the middle of his battle with the Federal Government, but even then was still focused on his work, and didn't spend a lot of time fretting about what could happen.
Then Josh defied San Francisco U.S. District Judge William Alsup's order to turn over the videos Josh had taken from a anti-G8 anarchist protes heldt in San Francisco on July 8, 2005. Wolf feared that the U.S. Government in the form of the FBI simply wanted to identify the people who were protesting and not solve a crime they claim had been committed against a police officer. Wolf's videos did not contain any footage of a police officer being harmed.
Still, U.S. District Judge William Alsup order Wolf to be held in jail for civil contempt of court later in 2006. Then, after negotiations, he was released but still refused to give up any of his videos, offering instead to post them online and show them to the Judge himself. Initially the judge refused, and Wolf was ordered back to jail.
Eventually, and after 226 days, Wolf agreed to show the then unseen video clip online and was released from jail. He never gave a copy of the video to the goverment.
In the wake of his ordeal and new stronger "shield" law has been placed in California law to protect journalists of all kinds, from print to blogs. We have Josh to thank for this.
Now, video film producer Sierra Choi is working to raise $250,000 to create a documentary called "Quiet Uprising: The Story of Josh Wolf" and needs our help. You can contact Sierra through me by sending an email here: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please help as many need to know Josh's story so this will never happen again.