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The Associated Press (AP) and other newspaper publishers were sued by the United States for violating the Sherman Anti-Trust Act. The AP’s By-Laws restricted admission to membership and effectively blocked non-members from buying news from AP or its publisher members, creating a combination of American newspaper publishers. The District Court found that the By-Laws constituted restraints of trade, hindering the growth of competing newspapers and violating the Sherman Act. The court ruled that the First Amendment’s freedom of the press does not protect non-governmental combinations from imposing restraints upon that constitutionally guaranteed freedom.

Associated Press v. United States (1945)
Supreme Court of the United States
326 U.S. 1, 89 L. Ed. 2013, 65 S. Ct. 1416, SCDB 1944-099, 1945 U.S. LEXIS 2663

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