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ICO consulting on possible data protection code of practice for the press

February 19th, 2013 | No Comments | Posted by in Data, Legal

ICO consultation doc data protection

Last week the Information Commissioner’s Office launched a “short public consultation” on proposals for a code of practice for the press in the Data Protection Act.

According to the ICO website this follows a recommendation from Lord Justice Leveson for the ICO to “prepare and issue comprehensive good practice guidelines and advice on appropriate principles and standards to be observed by the press in the processing of personal data”.

The consultation was sent out last week, and closes on Friday 15 March. The ICO website states:

This short public consultation on the likely scope and content of the proposed ICO code of practice is an important first step in ensuring our stakeholders have an opportunity to let us know their views and engage in constructive dialogue to develop a common understanding of how data protection legislation applies to the media. This will be followed by a full public consultation on the code itself.

In the consultation document the ICO adds:

The code will not contain any new legal duties – the purpose of such codes is to promote good practice and observance of the requirements of the Data Protection Act by data controllers. Depending upon decisions by the government about possible reform of the law, this guidance may require further review. However, we accept that it is important to produce guidance now, as recommended by Lord Justice Leveson.

Hatip: International Forum for Responsible Media blog.

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#Tip of the day for journalists: Legal refresh for journalists, with digital in mind

November 23rd, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Legal, Top tips for journalists

Image by Wiertz Sebastien on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

In a post on his Online Journalism Blog, Paul Bradshaw runs through seven laws – beyond libel, privacy, contempt – which may not be the first which spring to mind for journalists, but are important to know, such as when it comes to digital publishing. These include issues such as copyright, data protection, freedom of information and discrimination and hate speech legislation.

See his full post for more detail on the impacts of each of these laws.

If you have a tip you would like to submit to us at Journalism.co.uk email us using this link.

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The Twitter reaction to France’s ban on discussing predicted presidential results

April 23rd, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Politics, Social media and blogging

By Guillaume Paumier on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

“The results were like the elephant in the room” – that’s what one journalist told Journalism.co.uk after users were said to have taken to Twitter to try and get around a ban on the discussion of predicted results in the French presidential election.

The law, which dates from 1977, bans the reporting of results, projections and exit polls on the day before and day of the election until the closure of the last polling stations.

The ban will also apply to the run-off between Nicolas Sarkozy and Francois Hollande on Sunday 6 May and is expected to remain in place, after Jean-Francois Pillon, the head of France’s polling commission, reportedly said he would call on state prosecutors to bring charges against media organisations and individuals who had allegedly defied the ban.

The last polling stations closed at 8pm on Sunday, but before this deadline the hashtag #radiolondres, a reference to resistance broadcasts made in the Second World War, was being used to discuss the projected results, with the candidates being given code-names to try and circumvent the ban.

Nicola Hebden, a freelance journalist covering the election, told Journalism.co.uk the events highlighted the issue of attempting to ban information spreading on Twitter:

While we were broadcasting, the results were like the elephant in the room – we all knew them – the news team, the viewers – but we weren’t allowed to talk about them on air.

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Friday deadline for core participant status for next Leveson inquiry module

March 26th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Legal

The judge leading the public inquiry into press ethics has called for applications for core participant status for module three of the Leveson inquiry, which will look at the relationship between the press and politicians.

Lord Justice Leveson is currently hearing module two of the inquiry, the relationship between the press and police, having heard evidence for module one, the relationship between the press and the public.

According to an announcement on the inquiry website applications for core participant status - which allows participants to be legally represented at the inquiry and have questions asked on their behalf – must be made by the end of Friday (30 March).

These applications and other issues will be considered at a directions hearing for module three to be held at 2pm on Tuesday, 2 April.

Module four will look at “recommendations for a more effective policy and regulation that supports the integrity and freedom of the press while encouraging the highest ethical standards”.

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Privacy injunction statistics published by Ministry of Justice as part of new pilot scheme

March 19th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Legal

On Thursday last week the Ministry of Justice published a new report of “experimental” statistics relating to the processing of privacy injunctions at the High Court or Court of Appeal. This follows a recommendation by the Master of the Rolls committee.

The statistics relate to injunctions dealt with in any civil proceedings in the High Court or Court of Appeal in London where the court considers an application for an injunction prohibiting the publication of private or confidential information, the continuation of such an injunction, or an appeal against the grant or refusal of such an injunction.

The report shows that from August to December last year there were four proceedings in the High Court which “considered an application for a new interim injunction”, three where the court “considered whether to continue or amend an interim injunction which had previously been granted” and two where the proceedings involved a consideration of “whether to issue a final, permanent injunction”.

The statistics do not cover injunctions arising from proceedings dealing with family issues, immigration or asylum issues, to proceedings which raise issues of national security, nor to most proceedings dealing with intellectual property and employment issues.

The four applications for new interim injunctions were all said to have been granted by the court.

At the Court of Appeal one further proceeding was also recorded involving “an appeal against a grant or refusal of an interim or final injunction”.

According to the International Forum for Responsible Media (Inforrm) blog, which has looked at the statistics in more detail here, “none of these cases appear to have involved threatened media publication” as “no media defendants were joined”.

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Media release: New edition of McNae’s to launch at NCTJ seminar

February 22nd, 2012 | 1 Comment | Posted by in Legal, Training

The 21st edition of McNae’s Essential Law for Journalists will be launched next month, at the NCTJ’s media law seminar.

According to a release from the NCTJ, the new edition of the media law book includes a further look at issues such as:

… new coverage of broadcast regulation; new material on privacy and the media, including injunctions and phone hacking; new guidance on journalists’ use of social media; and further coverage of online journalism issues.

The book is authored by Mark Hanna and Mike Dodd, the release adds, who “will present and discuss these changes with tutors at the seminar”.

Press Complaints Commission chairman Lord Hunt will give the keynote speech at the London-based media law seminar on 30 March. According to the NCTJ, he will be giving “his views on the Leveson inquiry and the future of press regulation”.

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Judgment in Coulson v NGN to be handed down today

December 21st, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Legal

The judgment of former News of the World editor Andy Coulson’s legal action against News Group Newspapers is due to be handed down at 2pm.

Coulson took action against the publisher of the now-closed News of the World over payment of his legal fees.

Earlier today private investigator Glenn Mulcaire won his legal fees case against NGN.

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Revised guidance on live court reporting due Wednesday

December 13th, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Legal, Social media and blogging

Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge is due to outline “revised practice guidance” on “electronic text-based communications” tomorrow (Wednesday, 13 December), in a follow-up to interim guidance issued a year ago.

In December 2010 England and Wales’ most senior judge provided guidance which said individuals could be granted permission to use a mobile phone or other small electronic device “in order to make live text-based communications of the proceedings”, as long as they had made a prior application to the court.

At the time the guidance emphasised that permission for live reporting of court proceedings would only be granted based on each individual case.

According to a press notice, since issuing this guidance the Lord Chief Justice has run a consultation which has included contributions from figures such as the Secretary of State for Justice and Attorney General as well as bodies such as the Press Complaints Commission and Society of Editors.

Once the guidance is outlined in court it will be published online, the notice added.

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#Tip of the day from Journalism.co.uk – media law tweeters

The Inforrm (International Forum for Responsible Media) Blog has produced a great list of “useful media law tweeters” who can be followed to keep up with events in the legal world concerning journalism.

As well as a list of 90 tweeters the blog post also offers some useful hashtags to follow relating to current media law events, such as #Leveson and #libelreform.

See the Inforrm post here.

Tipster: Rachel McAthy

If you have a tip you would like to submit to us at Journalism.co.uk email us using this link – we will pay a fiver for the best ones published.

 

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#Tip of the day from Journalism.co.uk – advice on copyright and how to claim for breach

There is an informative article on the website for EPUK – Editorial Photographers United Kingdom and Ireland – which looks at what you can do if you think your copyright has been breached. As the article states, author Simon Crofts addresses: “your copyright, what you are entitled to claim from an infringer, and how to assemble and present a claim”.

Read it in full here.

Tipster: Rachel McAthy

If you have a tip you would like to submit to us at Journalism.co.uk email us using this link – we will pay a fiver for the best ones published.

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