Gawker, Hulk Hogan, and the Trials of the Free Press

"There is legitimate criticism of the media that it's gotten too cozy with power, and that it doesn't speak for people."

Director Brian Knappenberger recently spoke to students at the Columbia Journalism School about his recent film, Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press. The documentary explores the scandal after Gawker released a sex tape featuring former wrestler Hulk Hogan. 

In making the documentary, Knappenberger uncovered a far bigger threat to the press: how billionaires like Peter Thiel and Sheldon Adelson used their fortunes to censor journalists and the media trying to report on the story.

Knappenberger spoke to Columbia Journalism School Professor Betsy West about the film in 2017, about the film's reception in the Trump era, and the trials of the free press just a year after the Gawker scandal. 

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