The International Forum for Responsible Media Blog

Law and Media Round Up – 15 January 2018

The Data Protection Bill is currently progressing through the House of Lords, attracting much scrutiny in the process. Recent amendments can be found here.  The third day of the Report Stage was on 10 January 2018.

The Government were defeated on two amendments designed to implement Leveson’s cost shifting proposals and to commence Part Two of the Leveson Inquiry.  There was a report on this on the Hacked Off website. The Press Gazette considers Prime Minister Theresa May’s comments on the vote, which Brain Cathcart comments on in an Inforrm post.

This week on Inforrm we had an overview of data protection related case law throughout 2017 and preview of the Hilary Term.

In the United States Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s personal lawyer has filed a defamation claim against BuzzFeed following publication by the media site of an unverified dossier of documents about the President’s electoral campaign and Russian links.

The Media Reform Coalition has posted its agenda for 2018. This considers a wide range of policy issues including the promotion of local versus national media outlets, the growth of digital media providers and the increasingly pressurised public service broadcasting environment.

Internet and Social Media

Facebook has settled a claim by a revenge porn victim in the High Court in Belfast.  The implications of the settlement were discussed in the Guardian and on the BBC website.

The New York Times and BBC considered the recent vote by the House of Representatives to repeal laws which require US internet service providers to obtain users consent prior to sharing their browsing history with third parties.

Data Privacy and Data Protection

The ICO has fined Carphone Warehouse £400,000 for serious failures in data protection practices which placed customer and employee data at risk. This was covered by Hunton & Williams,

ICO has also identified four companies responsible for mass nuisance calls, texts and emails, issuing fines totalling £600,000.

Convicted murderer Graham Dyer has been refused permission to appeal his conviction on grounds that mobile phone records used in evidence were contrary to his privacy rights under the Communications (Retention of Data) Act 2011 and European data protection laws.

Hawktalk considers Theresa May’s statements in Prime Ministers questions regarding the safeguarding of EU-UK data transfers.

Newspapers Journalism and Regulation

The Transparency Project had a post “5 family law myths in the media” by barrister Byron James

The LSE Media Policy Project Blog has released an LSE Ballpark Podcast podcast on how to address the growing prevalence of fake news.


Zelo Street notes, in characteristically trenchant terms, the early resignation of IPSO Board Member, Sun columnist, Trevor Kavanagh. The Press Gazette also comments on this.

IPSO has issued information sheets to the public on the rules that “regulated” newspapers and magazines must follow:

The IPSO Blog has posted on the role of the regulator in supporting the public with information regarding their engagement with the press.

Press Gazette has considered IPSO’s ruling for the Daily Telegraph, verifying its use of Boris Johnson’s comment that the UK sends £350m a week to the European Union as “not significantly inaccurate”. The full decision can be found here.


There were no new IPSO ruling for the period of 9 January 2018 to 15 January 2018.  

Statements in Open Court and Apologies

There were no statements in open court last week.

Last Week in the Courts

Sharp LJ has made two decisions in the last two weeks refusing permission to appeal in libel cases. On 5 January 2018 permission was refused in the case of Monroe v Hopkins and on 9 January 2018 permission was refused in Guise v Shah.  There was a news item on the 5RB website.

On 9 January 2018 there was a further PTR in the case of Various Claimants v News Group Newspapers – the trial is due to begin next week (see below).  A judgment was handed down on 10 January 2018.

On 11 January 2018 there was a PTR in the case of Various Claimants v MGN Limited, before Mann J.  Judgment was handed down on 12 January 2018, adjourning the trial listed in February 2018 (curiously the case is listed under the name Jeff Brazier v MGN Ltd – despite the fact that Mr Brazier’s case settled some years ago).


16 January 2018, “Various Claimants v W M Morrison Ltd: Opening the data breach floodgates?“, Turing Lecture Theatre, IET, London Savoy Place, Savoy Place, London WC2R 0BL

26 February 2018, “Global Internet and Jurisdiction Conference,” Ottawa, Canada.

Please let us know if there are any media and law events which you would like us to list. 

Media Law in Other Jurisdictions


Human Rights Watch considers the Burmese government’s misuse of privacy laws to prosecute critics.


Michael Geist Blog considers accessibility of information issues posed by the Canadian governments appointment and management of NAFTA Advisory Council members.


Norton Rose Fulbright’s Social Media Law Bulletin covers the Network Enforcement Act, considering the focus of the legislation on hate speech and its implementation of complaint procedures.


The Hindu considers protecting individual privacy rights following the development of big data.

United States

The Socially Aware Blog has a post which considers a recent decision made by the Sixth Circuit in Signature Management Team, LLC v. John Doe. The judgment has notably established a presumption in favour of unmaking anonymous defendants in cases where judgment has been entered for the plaintiff. This has implications anonymous internet users who post third-party copyrighted content without prior authorization who may risk losing their anonymity. The Blog also has a Round Up considering data protection obligations of social media outlets.

The Daily Mail considered the upholding of an award of $523,250 in damages to Gretchen Rossi in a bankruptcy court following her defamation lawsuit against former husband Jay Photoglou.

The Europe Data Protection Digest has a podcast considering the House of Representatives vote on s.702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Amendments Act.

Research and Resources

Next Week in the Courts 

On 18 January 2018 the trial in the cases of Various Claimants v News Group Newspapers will begin before Mann J.  We had a case preview.

On the same day there will a PTR in the cases of NT1 v Google and NT2 v Google.


The following reserved judgment after a public hearing in a media law case is outstanding:

Kennedy v The National Trust for Scotland, heard 21 November 2017 (Sir David Eady).

This round up was compiled by Suneet Sharma, a junior legal professional with a particular interest and experience in media law



1 Comment

  1. daveyone1

    Reblogged this on World4Justice : NOW! Lobby Forum..

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