News: Trimingham v Associated Newspapers, Permission to Appeal Granted

25 09 2012

The Court of Appeal has granted Carina Trimingham permission to appeal against the High Court’s judgment in her harassment and privacy claim against Associated Newspapers, publisher of the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday.  In granting permission to appeal, Lord Justice Laws emphasised that there were “significant issues” as to the Judge’s treatment of the harassment claim.  He also noted that this was the first trial in England and Wales of a civil claim for harassment against a newspaper. He granted permission on all grounds, including Ms Trimingham’s privacy claim and claims under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. Read the rest of this entry »





A dearth of data about defamation cases in England and Wales – Judith Townend

25 09 2012

On Tuesday 18 September, the Law Society held a public debate on the Defamation Bill, asking the panel – including two QCs, a libel reform campaigner and an in-house newspaper lawyer – what they thought of its measures. Much was said about what was missing in the final bill. But I would add something that was missing in the consultative process: data. Read the rest of this entry »





The Leveson Inquiry: The danger of power – Martin Moore

24 09 2012

There is no shortage of quotes or aphorisms about the corrupting nature of too much power. From Thomas Bailey’s warning that “The possession of unlimited power will make a despot of almost any man” to Lord Acton’s ”absolute power corrupts absolutely”. Why does this happen? Empathy, as readers of Machiavelli’s The Prince will know, can be detrimental to the pursuit of power. “It is much safer,” Machiavelli wrote, “to be feared than to be loved.” Powerful people, in other words, can cease to see other people as human. Read the rest of this entry »





Law and Media Round Up – 24 September 2012

24 09 2012

The theme of privacy continued to dominate media law discussion last week, as a French court granted an injunction prohibiting further publication of the Duchess of Cambridge photographs in France. Press Gazette reported that the editor of the Irish Daily Star, Michael O’Kane, was suspended following his decision to publish the photographs. Read the rest of this entry »





Royalty, Nudity, Privacy, and Profitability – Oliver O’Callaghan

23 09 2012

The recent publication of topless pictures of The Duchess of Cambridge in a French magazine, following so closely after the exposure of Prince Harry’s nocturnal activities in Las Vegas, has returned the issue of the private lives of public figures to the forefront of the news once again. Coming as Lord Justice Leveson prepares his report arising from the eponymous inquiry, there are a number unresolved debates relating to the publication of private information about celebrities or public figures such as the royal family. Read the rest of this entry »





Opinion: We need a Privacy Bill in Ireland, just not this one – Eoin O’Dell

22 09 2012

Image of Examiner op-edThe drumbeats for privacy legislation can once again be heard around Leinster House. I did a radio interview with Matt Cooper on Today FM’s The Last Word and I had an op-ed about it in the Irish Examiner: Read the rest of this entry »





Free speech and prosecution in the age of Twitter – Adam Wagner

21 09 2012

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has decided not to charge Daniel Thomas for posting a homophobic message on Twitter, the social networking site, about the swimmer Tom Daley. The press release, which takes the form of an extended quote from the Director of Public Prosecutions, is fascinating. I have reproduced it in full below. Read the rest of this entry »





Defamation claims and Google’s autocomplete – Gervase de Wilde

21 09 2012

Google’s autocomplete function has become yet another of the company’s range of services which most internet users use unthinkingly. It offers suggested terms according to the characters you have already typed, based on other users’ search activities, and on the content of existing web pages. The user-driven nature of internet search means that the suggestions it makes for particular individuals’ names are not necessarily those that they would welcome themselves, or ones which are genuinely useful. Read the rest of this entry »





Journalisted: week ending Sunday 16 September 2012, Hillsborough, Stevens and Mohamud

20 09 2012

Journalisted is an independent, not-for-profit website built to make it easier for the public, to find out more about journalists and what they write about. It is run by the Media Standards Trust.   It collects information automatically from the websites of British news outlets. Articles are indexed by journalist, based on the byline to the article. Keywords and statistics are automatically generated, and the site searches for any blogs or social bookmarking sites linking to each article. Read the rest of this entry »





Should the Duchess of Cambridge call upon Google to assist in restoring her privacy? – Tim Lowles

20 09 2012

So, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been successful in obtaining an injunction against Closer magazine from the Tribunal de Grande Instance de Nanterre, preventing the magazine from re-publishing or selling topless pictures of the Duchess.  Is that the end of the story? Far from it, the story will continue for ever thanks to the internet. Read the rest of this entry »