Wisconsin newspapers join national First Amendment campaign

Think First Amendment Logo

MADISON – Wisconsin newspapers have joined the national “Think F1rst” campaign, which aims to help educate Americans about the five freedoms guaranteed in the First Amendment.

The Wisconsin Newspaper Association joins other newspaper and broadcast associations in 28 states in support of the effort, which runs from Aug. 1 to Dec. 31. The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association is also participating.

Members can support the campaign by running ads in print, on their websites and on social media platforms.

The campaign was conceived last year by Media of Nebraska after members of the nonprofit Freedom of Information coalition noted polls showing that many Americans lacked basic knowledge of the First Amendment, particularly in articulating the five freedoms that it guarantees.

In a civics survey taken by the Annenberg Public Policy Center, nearly 4 in 10 students couldn’t name even one of the five freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment. Members of the coalition worked together to outline a campaign to combat these disturbing statistics.

After “Think F1rst” debuted in Nebraska in 2018, the dedicated website www.ThinkFirstAmendment.org attracted over 400,000 page views within 60 days.

“The First Amendment and the freedoms it ensures are crucial to our democracy,” said WNA Executive Director Beth Bennett. “We hope the ‘Think F1rst’ campaign will serve as a reminder of how important those rights are and encourage Wisconsinites to exercise them.”

Julia Hunter
Director of Membership & Communications
Wisconsin Newspaper Association