Law and Media Round Up – 26 November 2018

26 11 2018

The LSE Truth, Trust and Technology Commission has released its report “Tackling the Information Crisis [pdf]”.  The Report focuses on how to curtail misinformation and “fake news” whilst promoting reputable journalistic outlets.

A core recommendation is the establishment of an Independent Platform Agency, a watchdog for platform self-regulation and legislative reform. We had posts on this report from Professors Charlie Beckett and Sonia Livingstone. The Press Gazette has commented on the Report’s publication focusing on its suggestions that technology companies be subject to a levy to finance regulation.

The High Court has quashed a decision to refuse the journalist Michael Segalov accreditation to attend the Labour Party conference in 2017 ([2018] EWHC 3187 (Admin)).  There is a report on the decision in the Press Gazette.

The Lord Chief Justice’s Annual Report 2018 has been published and covers issues including judicial morale, media portrayal of the judiciary, establishment of the Media and Communications List and preparations for the continued administration of justice post-Brexit. The Transparency Project has considers excerpts from the Report focusing on similar matters, particularly those within its family law remit.

The Chief Justice of Ireland, Mr Justice Frank Clarke, announced on Saturday 17 November 2018 that a new Practice Direction will be issued providing guidance on the use of social media and digital devices in the courts. The Press Gazette has coverage of the statements, which focus on ensuring the integrity of ongoing cases is maintained and social media and mobile use is limited to lawyers where necessary.

Facebook’s pledge of £4.5m to support local journalism in the UK has been critiqued by Verdict and in an INFORRM post by Brian Cathcart.

The BBC has a news story about the recent case of Doyle v Smith entitled “Caddington Village News blogger sued for libel over fraud claims”

Lexisnexis has conducted an interview of Brett Wilson Managing Partner Ian Wilson discussing the issues around using parliamentary privilege to undermine injunctions, using the recent incident involving Lord Hain as a case study.

Internet and Social Media

Secretary of State for Digital Culture, Media and Sport Jeremy Wright delivered a speech at the ISPA UK Parliament and Internet Conference on 20 November 2018. The speech covers the continuing development and implementation of the Government’s Digital Charter.

Utilizing technology and the issues this presents, a broad topic, has been analysed by Stanford’s Cyberlaw Blog, which provides a pragmatic view on the issue of technological regulation.

The Children’s Commissioner’s report on the impact of social media on children’s mental health has been analysed by ITV News via a Facebook Live Chat.

The Telegraph analyses the development of blockchain, also designated “the internet of value” and the implication of such rapid growth.

In October 2018 Twitter banned deadnaming and misgendering in a move providing greater recognition of trans rights. Newshub has noted the debate this has prompted regarding issues of free speech and Twitters Terms of Service.

Data Privacy and Data Protection

Regulation 2018/1725 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2018 has been published. The Regulation addresses the processing of personal data by EU institutions and has been covered by the IAPP.

Hawktalk has covered Britain’s Draft Withdrawal Agreement from the European Union critiquing it for its lack of depth in ensuring that the free flow of data is maintained.

On INFORRM Alex Cochrane has covered Various Claimants v WM Morrison Supermarkets PLC [2018] EWCA Civ 2339 and the issues that arise from the case regarding employer’s vicarious liability for employee’s data breaches.

Mischon de Reya’s Data Matters Blog has considered the issue of data theft in the life sciences industry.

PwC has unpacked the liability imposed upon companies by the GDPR on its blog.

Donnees Personnelles has published a template confidentiality agreement along with insightful practical guidance as to entering into such agreements. Please note that this is under French law.

ICO

The ICO is conducting further research into the implications of Artificial Intelligence on data privacy following its appointment of Dr Reuben Binns, as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Artificial Intelligence.

Surveillance

The New York Times has covered the Chinese Government’s attempts at internet censorship.

Newspapers, Journalism and Regulation

The FT editor Lionel Barber delivered the James Cameron memorial Lecture at the City University on 22 November 2018, “Too big to fail: free speech and the future of financial journalism”. The Press Gazette has published the full text.

In an INFORRM-repost Mark Bradley speculates as to the future of journalism and how outlets must ensure they tailor their approach to news publishing to readers, not shareholders.

The Independent Online has an opinion piece on the importance of journalism in the democratic process and accountability.

The New York Times considers the need for high quality localised journalism and credits the success of some outlets.

IPSO

Rulings

Four rulings and five resolution statements have been published by IPSO’s Complaints Committee this week:

Statements in Open Court and Apologies

We are not aware of any statements  in open court in the past week.

Last Week in the Courts

On 19 November 2018 Nicklin J heard the second PTR in the privacy case of ZXC v Bloomberg.  The reporting restrictions order was continued. The case is listed for trial this week.

On Wednesday 21 November 2018 the Court of Appeal (Lewison, Ryder and Sharp LJJ) handed down judgment in the case of Economou v Freitas (heard 17 and 18 April 2018).  The appeal was dismissed ([2018] EWCA Civ 2591).  We will publish a case comment shortly.

As already mentioned, on 23 November 2018, the Administrative Court gave judgment in the case of R (Segalov) v Chief Constable of Sussex [2018] EWHC 3187 (Admin)

Events

Media Law in Other Jurisdictions

Australia

In the case of Scott v Baring [2018] WASC 361 the Court assessed libel damages following a default judgment in the total sum of A$140,000.  The claim concerned a number of Facebook posts.

The Hugh Stephens Blog has a post entitled “Fair Use or Fair Dealing? The Debate Continues ‘Down Under’”.

Canada

The Hugh Stephens Blog has a post entitled “Canada’s Notice and Notice Regime: the End of Speculative Invoicing (It won’t be missed)”

Michael Geist considers how to sustainably finance journalism, advancing a framework of tax incentives opposed to a subsidisation model.

Geist has also posted an extensive series of posts analysing the fair dealing exception to Canadian copyright laws. Parts One and Two consider policy issues whereas Three and Four consider the educational use of copyrighted materials:

New Zealand

In the case of Sellman v Slater (No.6) [2018] NZHC 3075 Palmer J refused an application by the Whaleoil blogger Cameron Slater to exclude hacked documents from consideration.  There was a news report on Newsroom.co.nz.

United States

The internet cases blog has covered the case of Benson v. Double Down Interactive, LLC, 2018 WL 5921062, a case which analysed the enforceability and sufficiency of the terms of service utilized by a gaming app.

Spectrum News has covered the issue of internet sales tax and the implications for consumers.

The Guardian has analysed coverage of allegations the President Trump has connections with Russia and has determined that a new reporting model is required to ensure members of the public can be accurately informed.

Research and Resources

Data Protection and Data Privacy

Internet and Social Media

Next Week in the Courts 

On 27 November 2018 Nicklin J will hear the trial in the privacy case of ZXC v Bloomberg.  The case is listed for 3 days.

Judgments

The following reserved judgments after public hearings in media law cases are outstanding:

Monir v Wood, heard 16 to 19 April and 3 to 5 July 2018 (Nicklin J).

Kennedy v National Trust for Scotland, heard 25 and 26 July 2018 (Sharp and Asplin LJJ and Sir Rupert Jackson).

Butt v Secretary of State for the Home Department, heard 17 October 2018 (Underhill V-P, Sharp LJ and Sir Rupert Jackson).

Nugent v Willers, heard 13 November 2018 (Privy Council)

Lachaux v Independent Print, heard 13 and 14 November 2018 (UKSC)

This Round Up was compiled by Suneet Sharma, a junior legal professional with a particular interest and experience in media law.


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