Thoughts from a chair

Thoughts from a chair In December of last year, Amber Melville-Brown took on the challenge of spending 48 hours in a wheelchair to raise money and awareness for Back Up, Withers nominated Charity of the Year. Amber commuted to and from work, attended meetings and social events and navigated London from her ‘newly diminutive, chair-bound height of 4’’. Continue reading

Privacy protection on the up

Privacy protection on the upRecent figures released by Thompson Reuters show that the number of cases involving privacy issues taken to court has doubled since 2009. The year ending May 2014 saw 56 reported such cases compared to 26 cases in 2009 / 2010. And these figures don’t count the many cases which settle before reaching court. Continue reading

Bare Faced Cheek

Ruth Dunley of the Canadian online publication, Postmedia Digial, reports on the privacy ramifications of the publication by German magazine Bild, of photographs of the Duchess of Cambridge, caught unawares by a gust of wind. Ms Dunley sought comment from privacy specialist, Amber Melville-Brown which can be viewed here.

Science fiction or science fact?

Science fiction or science fact?That science and new scientific developments are a vital part of our modern society is reflected in one of the changes brought in to defamation law, by the new Defamation Act 2013. We now have a shiny new state of the art defence of qualified privilege in relation to peer-reviewed material published in scientific or academic journals. Continue reading

Truth be told…

The new defence of truth under section 2, Defamation Act 2013

‘The truth is a beautiful and terrible thing, and should therefore be treated with great caution’. They are the wise words of Professor Dumbledore of Hogwarts fame. Whether or not it is beautiful and terrible, a new statutory defence of ‘truth’ has replaced the old defence of justification. Continue reading

Amber Warnings – Don’t be socially awkward…

Amber Warnings – Don’t be socially awkward…At our event, Socially Awkward, last night, Daniel Isaac of our employment team, Kenneth Mullen of our IP team and I discussed social media and its legal implications.  We were joined on stage by Phil Lewis of London Strategy Unit.

I spoke about three of the legal weapons that you may find in your armoury to protect you against attacks from others in the online environment; and reminded you that you may find these weapons turned on you. They are the laws of defamation, privacy and harassment.

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You cannot be serious…?!

The new serious harm test under section 1, Defamation Act 2013

The law of defamation assists a claimant, damaged by a defamatory publication, to remedy a rubbished reputation. But just what is a defamatory publication? Right from the get go of the new Defamation Act 2013, which came into effect on 1 January 2014, it is clear that changes are afoot. Continue reading

Love Twitter; US and UK Style

Courtney Love has successfully defended her former lawyer’s US Twitter libel claim – ‘Twibel’ as it been labelled by media and on social media. The case has been lauded as breaking new ground in defining the nexus of social media and defamation, writes Amber Melville-Brown in the Huffington Post here.

New Year – New Defamation Act

New Year - New Defamation ActThe New Year has brought those of us operating in the field of media law, a new act; the Defamation Act 2013 which came into force on 1 January 2014. Now, call me cynical, but operating mainly on the claimant side of the media divide, I doubt very much whether many editors up and down the land made New Year resolutions to henceforth only fill their papers with accurate and important public interest information, rather than titillation and gossip. And if this is the case, the new act will have its work cut out during 2014 in seeking to achieve justice between the media on the one hand and those caught in its glare, on the other. Continue reading