California Supreme court prohibits recording Californians

Ethan Ackerman eackerma at
Thu Jul 13 03:35:59 PDT 2006

without their consent - regardless of where you are.

Greetings Dave,
Many people, especially reporters, are familiar with state laws
prohibiting phone conversations from being recorded without the
consent of one or both parties to the call.  Some states, and federal
law, require only 1 party to consent, other states require both or all
parties to consent.  California is one such 'all-party' consent state.
(Think Linda Tripp recording Monica Lewinsky talking about her boss,
or the floridian couple recording Newt Gingrich coordinating his
ethics probe with John Boehner, as past examples of this distinction.)

Well today, the California Supreme Court found that Georgia-based
employees of the Solomon Smith Barney brokerage who were taping
California customers with out notice or consent violated California
laws, even if they might have been complying with Georgia's '1 party'
consernt laws.

While the court refused to fine the brokers, finding their reliance on
Georgia law reasonable, it did enjoin them from taping Californians in
the future.
Case is here:

This decision will likely have a large impact on investigative
reporting, and has definite impacts on other areas of privacy and
consumer protection law as well.


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