Prince George – To Pap or Not to Pap?

You’ve heard the story of the princess and the pea – the delicate princess distressed and discomforted by a tiny vegetable under myriad mattresses? This is the story of the prince and the ‘p’ – ‘p’ for paparazzi – distressed and discomforted by a minority of media taking and publishing pictures of him without his consent.

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Jurors caught out in court

Jurors caught out in courtBeing called to do jury service is a societal duty. And a privilege. Because it is a fundamental plank of our democracy that those charged with criminal offences should be judged not only by a professional judge but by a jury of their peers. Continue reading

Loose lips sink ships

Loose Lips Sink ShipsThe national media has recently been reporting the exposure of the Harry Potter creator as the thought-to-be first time author of a new novel. To great critical review, ‘Robert Galbraith’ had published his first book, the detective thriller, The Cuckoo’s Calling. However, this was not all that it appeared, because from underneath the magic cloak of anonymity, JK Rowling has had to step forth, unintentionally outed as the author. Given her worldwide public acclaim as best selling children’s author-extraordinaire, publishing in the relatively obscurity of anonymity must have been a liberating experience. So the fact of her status as author of The Cuckoo’s Calling would to her have been priceless and deeply confidential. No doubt she would have preferred had Galbraith stayed slightly longer out of the media glare. Continue reading

The Times – comment piece on paternity and privacy

In today’s The Times, in print and online, I comment on a recent decision balancing the right to privacy against the right to free speech and the public interest. In Guard privacy to avoid nips from the press I discuss the balance being struck by the courts in a privacy case concerning the paternity of a child and her politician father.inflatable sports tunnels 

While the rights of children must be protected, the girl’s right to privacy had been reduced by comments that her mother had made about the paternity. While neither have commented publicly about the issue of paternityinflatable sports tunnels, the fact that the child is said to have been fathered by the married London Mayor, Boris Johnson, was ‘a public interest matter which the electorate was entitled to know when considering his fitness for high public office’ which outweighed the child’s reducted expectation of privacy.

I love Rock n Roll… (and privacy injunctions)

A privacy injunction is a powerful tool for those who wish to keep their privates private. And a recent case in the High Court on an application for an interim privacy injunction has helped to reassert the principles applicable.

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The Hacked Off Leveson Bill – Kryptonite for the press?

Christmas is over, we’ve survived the New Year celebrations, the weather is taking a turn for the worse, and the post excess January Blues are hanging around as they always do. What is there to drag us out of our funk? Well, for those previously addicted to the Leveson inquiry on press ethics, with the celebrity circus of evidence-giving over and the long-awaited report of Lord Justice Leveson done, the answer might appear to be, not much.

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Privacy and Papping Toms

This has been the week of the topless photograph. On (court) paper at least, it looks like a victory for privacy; both the Duchess of Cambridge and Elsa Pataky, the Spanish actress and wife of Thor star Chris Hemworth, have won separate legal battles in France and Spain after surreptitiously obtained photographs were ruled to be in breach of their privacy.

Whilst Kate was sunbathing topless on the terrace of a private villa set in acres of private land when snapped, Elsa Pataky was caught in-between photo shoots on a beach in a private resort inMexicoby a rogue photographer armed with a long-lens camera. So what do these judgments tell us other than the public has an insatiable appetite for semi-clad images of young and attractive women…? Amber Melville-Brown (partner) and Caroline Thomson (trainee) consider.

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A Prince’s Privacy Part II – Privacy Denied

Today, The Sun newspaper published intimate and private photographs of HRH Prince Harry, naked in a private hotel room. It is clear that he has a reasonable expectation of privacy to protect against any such publication, as our last blog set out. So why has The Sun done this? Continue reading

A Prince’s Privacy – What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas

The newspapers are packed with stories about Prince Harry’s crown jewels after photographs were surreptitiously snapped of him with his privates firmly on parade. The circumstances? He was enjoying a game of strip billiards with a number of lovely ladies in a hotel room while on holiday in Las Vegas. And apparently, Harry is not too good at billiards, because the photos show that he has forfeited all his clothes.

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