Take care with that social media duty of care – Graham Smith

23 10 2018

Should social media platforms be subject to a statutory duty of care, akin to occupiers’ liability or health and safety, with the aim of protecting against online harms? In a series of blogposts and evidence to the House of Lords Communications Committee William Perrin and Professor Lorna Woods suggest that the answer should be yes. Read the rest of this entry »





A Lord Chamberlain for the internet? Thanks, but no thanks – Graham Smith

10 10 2018

This summer marked the fiftieth anniversary of the Theatres Act 1968, the legislation that freed the theatres from the censorious hand of the Lord Chamberlain of Her Majesty’s Household. Thereafter theatres needed to concern themselves only with the general laws governing speech. In addition they were granted a public good defence to obscenity and immunity from common law offences against public morality. Read the rest of this entry »





Big Brother Watch v UK: What are the implications for the Investigatory Powers Act? – Graham Smith

14 09 2018

Yesterday I was transported back in time, to that surreal period following the Snowden revelations in 2013 when anyone who knew anything about the previously obscure RIPA (Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000) was in demand to explain how it was that GCHQ was empowered to conduct bulk interception on a previously unimagined scale. Read the rest of this entry »





Regulating the internet: intermediaries to perpetrators – Graham Smith

29 06 2018

Nearly twenty five years after the advent of the Web, and longer since the birth of the internet, we still hear demands that the internet should be regulated – for all the world as if people who use the internet were not already subject to the law. Read the rest of this entry »





The Electronic Commerce Directive: a phantom demon? – Graham Smith

4 05 2018

Right now the ECommerce Directive – or at any rate the parts that shield hosting intermediaries from liability for users’ content – is under siege. The guns are blazing from all directions. Read the rest of this entry »





Internet legal developments to look out for in 2018 – Graham Smith

2 01 2018

A preview of some of the UK internet legal developments that we can expect in 2018. Any future EU legislation will be subject to Brexit considerations and may or may not apply in the UK. Read the rest of this entry »





Worldwide search de-indexing orders: Google v Equustek – Graham Smith

26 07 2017

The Supreme Court of Canada has issued its decision in Google Inc v Equustek (2017 SCC 34). This is the case in which a small Canadian technology company, Equustek, asked the Canadian courts to grant an injunction against the well-known US search engine ordering it to de-index specified websites – not just on its Canadian domain google.ca, but on a worldwide basis. Read the rest of this entry »