Jack Shafer goes to bat for McGinniss
McGinniss' stunt will outrage those who believe reporters should get close but not too close, who believe that there is something sacred about an individual's place of residence, who would prefer reporters to behave more like Boy Scouts and less like gumshoes.
Taking up residence next to Palin doesn't even approach violating her legal right to privacy. She has no legal right to blind eyes looking at her property from an adjoining property or even from the street. If McGinniss didn't live next door, he'd be completely within his rights to interview Palin's neighbors about her. In fact, he'd be remiss if he didn't grill them about her.
Kate Pickert has a half-hearted defense of Palin:
Isn't this what a journalist writing a critical book about a subject should expect? To be bullied and boycotted by supporters of the subject? This is not new. What is new is the way Palin chose to react to McGinniss's move. Rather than hunker down and use back channels and legal threats to stymie McGinniss's work - as public figures have historically often done in cases like this - she's using Facebook to bring it all out into the open.