Case Law: R (Bridges) v Chief Constable of South Wales Police: The use of facial recognition software by the police is lawful –  Suneet Sharma

6 09 2019

On 4 September 2019 the Administrative Court (Haddon-Cave LJ and Swift J) handed down judgment in the case of R (Bridges) v Chief Constable of the South Wales Police [2019] EWHC 2341 (Admin).  The Court held that it was lawful for the police to use automated facial recognition software (“AFR”). Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law: R (Ngole) v The University of Sheffield, Blanket Ban on “Homophobic” religious expression disproportionate – Samuel Rowe

28 08 2019

On 3 July 2019, the Court of Appeal handed down its decision in R (Ngole) v University of Sheffield ([2019] EWCA Civ 1127).  The case concerned an appeal against a dismissed judicial review of the decision to remove Felix Ngole, a social work student, from his course. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law, Strasbourg: Brzeziński v. Poland: Fine over ‘false’ information during election campaign violated Article 10 – Ronan Ó Fathaigh

16 08 2019

On 25 July 2019, the European Court of Human Rights delivered an important judgment in Brzeziński v. Poland, (available only in French) concerning a provision in Poland’s election law which allows a court, within 24 hours, to consider whether ‘untrue information’ has been published, and to issue an order prohibiting its further distribution. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law, Scotland: B C and Ors v Chief Constable of Police Service of Scotland, Police WhatsApp Group chats not private – Darryl Hutcheon

8 08 2019

A police force is conducting a criminal investigation into a sexual offence alleged to have been committed, as it happens, by one of its own officers. The force seizes his phone and comes across WhatsApp group chats in which several other officers in its service have posted offensive messages. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law: Butt v Home Secretary, Honest Opinion Defence Clarified – Samuel Rowe

10 07 2019

On 6 June 2019, judgment in an appeal brought by Dr Salman Butt against the Home Secretary was handed down by the Court of Appeal ([2019] EWCA Civ 933).  The case concerned an action in libel which had arisen from the publication of a press release on the government’s Prevent policy. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Comment: Advertising Standards Authority v Mitchell, the Perils of the Misdirected Email – Oscar Davies

3 07 2019

The case of Advertising Standards Authority v Mitchell ([2019] EWHC 1469 (QB)) deals with the problem of a misdirected email.  We have all sent an email to the wrong person, realising only moments after sending it.  Warby J considers the perils of such a situation, and how the court may step in if the receiving party refuses to undertake not to use the information. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law: Kennedy v National Trust for Scotland: No pictures, please, Scotland versus England as a forum for defamation cases – Dan Tench, Emma Boffey, Graeme MacLeod and Jo Clark

18 06 2019

The Court of Appeal in England & Wales has handed down its judgment in the matter of Howard Kennedy v The National Trust for Scotland [2019] EWCA Civ 648, on appeal from the decision of Sir David Eady, sitting as a judge of the High Court on the Queen’s Bench Division Media and Communications List. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law: Spicer v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis, Headlines must be read in context – Oscar Davies

15 06 2019

In the case of Spicer v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis [2019] EWHC 1439 (QB) Warby J held that an article’s headline, however defamatory, must be read in context, with the text of the article, in order to arrive at the natural and ordinary meaning. The judgment provides a useful exposition of the ‘bane and antidote’ principle. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law, South Africa: Manuel v Economic Freedom Fighters, The legal consequences of fake news – Dario Milo

6 06 2019

“Fake news” – a term ironically made popular by Donald Trump – is a real problem for our democracy.  This is not news which the publisher reasonably believes to be true because, for example, steps have been taken to verify the information. Read the rest of this entry »





Case Law, Australia: Raynor v Murray, Torrid times at the Watermark flats – Gabrielle Hunter

4 06 2019

In the case of Raynor v Murray ([2019] NSWDC 189) the District Court of NSW ordered Patricia Murray, a tenant of Manly residential flats known as “Watermark”, to pay damages of $120,000 to the chairman of the building’s strata committee for a defamatory email regarding an unlocked mailbox. Read the rest of this entry »