Oct 312011
 
 October 31, 2011  Court, Laws, Non-U.S., Online

Chris Wimpress reports:

The number of celebrities hiding behind super-injunctions has fallen dramatically, Britain’s top newspaper editors have confirmed.

Earlier this year a row over public figures abusing such court injunctions broke out.

Private Eye editor Iain Hislop was one of several senior journalists to tell MPs and Peers on Monday that the issue appeared to have corrected itself.

Parliament is considering whether privacy laws and press regulation needs changing in the light of a string of celebrity injunctions which became a laughing stock on Twitter.

[…]

Earlier, MPs heard from Professor Steven Barnett of the University of Westminster, who rejected the notion that someone revealing the name of someone with a superinjunction should be prosecuted.

“Exposure on Twitter is irrelevant. Because people are talking about something in the pub doesn’t mean you can run a five page spread about it. This is not a mass medium. For me the pub analogy still works.”

Barnett was also sceptical about whether a blogger should be prosecuted for similar offences. “There are very few blogs which have mass audiences, and those that do are people in the know talking to each other.”

Read more on Huffington Post UK.

While it would be nice to see bloggers protected, it seems to be a two-edged sword. How can we argue that bloggers should be treated as journalists when it comes to freedoms and protections and yet not hold them to the same standards as other journalists if they violate a court gag? What do you think?

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