The International Forum for Responsible Media Blog

Month: January 2012 (Page 1 of 4)

Round up of Media Law in 2011: the view from Australia – Yvonne Kux

It was a big year for media and the law. Rupert Murdoch’s tacky tabloid, News of the World, closed after revelations of widespread phone hacking. The UK government released a draft Libel Reform Bill. Australia came closer to a tort of privacy, defamation trials dwindled, documentary cameras entered Australian criminal courts and everyone had something to say about the uniform Defamation Act. Continue reading

Legal questions about Twitter ‘censorship’ and country-specific content control – Judith Townend

Media reports of Twitter’s newly announced country-specific content policy have focused on the implication for authoritarian regimes low down the press freedom table.  But its application in the UK raises interesting questions too: which authorities will Twitter respond to and to what types of complaint?

Twitter has not disclosed the finer details of its policy, as it does not want “to comment on hypothetical situations“. That was the line from Twitter’s media office as well its head of global public policy, Colin Crowell who appeared in front of the Joint Committee on Privacy and Injunctions on Monday. Continue reading

News: Phone Hacking and Police Corruption – Five Operation Elveden Arrests

The police have made five more arrests as part of Operation Elveden – the investigation into “inappropriate payments” to Metropolitan Police officers.  One police officer and four present or former “Sun” journalists and executives were arrested.  There have now been thirteen arrests as part of the investigaiton into payments to police officers and, in total, 32 arrests arising out of the “phone hacking” and related investigations. Continue reading

News: European Data Protection reforms – the main innovations – Gervase de Wilde

On 25 January 2012 the European Commission released the EU’s keenly anticipated new Data Protection Regulation and Directive.  A large array of resources, including the full text of the proposed new rules, is available on the Commission’s website. The UK’s own Information Commissioner has published an initial response to the proposals, broadly welcoming them.   Continue reading

Why the US Web Piracy Bills walked the Plank – Kirsten Sjovoll

Little introduction is needed to the furore that has resulted from two pieces of US anti-piracy legislation. The Stop Online Piracy Act (“SOPA”) and its sister bill “Protect IP [Intellectual Property] Act (“PIPA”) started out with the backing of Silicon Valley, the White House and – perhaps less helpfully – Rupert Murdoch. Yet they now find themselves very much in the dark as they are shelved by the US Senate in the aftermath of the high profile “black out” by Wikipedia and other sites. Continue reading

Leveson: Could Press Regulation include Libel Arbitration? – Hugh Tomlinson QC

During the first seven weeks of evidence at his inquiry, Lord Justice Leveson has visited the outer reaches of journalism and ethics. But he has to look beyond the paparazzi packs and the story-lobbing editors and make practical recommendations for “effective policy and regulation”. A tempting menu of at least 12 regulatory models has been presented. The large and difficult question is which of these is at once practical and strikes the right balance between individuals, the public, and the press. Continue reading

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