Michigan lawmaker wants to license journalists

State Sen. Bruce Patterson says he believes in the need for “legitimate news sources,” but he wants Michigan to identify who those “legitimate” sources are.

The term-limited Republican from Canton Township is using his final months in office to spur a conversation about what it means to be a journalist and encourage a distinction between traditional and new media. 

Patterson last month introduced legislation that would establish a state licensing board for journalists. Reporters from “a generally recognized media or press association” who apply for licensing, meet criteria including “good moral character” and pay a $10 fee would earn the distinction of “Michigan registered reporter.”


The story goes on beyond this and please, in the name of all that is holy, click on the referring link if only to see a sweet handlebar mustache. Yes, I said handlebar mustache.

This came to me courtesy of my friend Megan Cottrell who is not only a wonderful writer and person, but also smart, hilarious and kind. Follow Megan here: http://twitter.com/mmcottrell or read her on True/Slant: http://trueslant.com/megancottrell/


  1. Anonymous June 2, 2010

    Who gets to define “good moral character”?!

  2. Anna Tarkov June 2, 2010

    I’m thinking that he would define good moral character as anyone who is willing to write complimentary things about him or his colleagues. After all, he expressed dire concern that “many journalists covering the state Capitol don’t know what they’re talking about.”

    One can only hope that Mayor Daley doesn’t catch wind of this idea. I’m sure he’d love to license us. Heck, the city could even make money on it!

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