tip off

The octogenarian no-win, no-fee lawyer draining media coffers

Defamation lawyer Clive Evatt has media editors trembling in their boots, and he’s not afraid to embark on multi-year cases that end up in the High Court. But is he a friend to the battler, or just a provocateur?

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The spiralling cost of freedom of the press

In an age of fragmentation and financial difficulties, court costs for media lawsuits are becoming prohibitive. What impact will this have on what journos dare to write?

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The mystery arrested ‘star’: red-tops grow a conscience

Even the raciest tabloids in the UK are refusing to identify the household name arrested on suspicion of sexual offences. Australian media has done the same thing. So what’s going on?

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Devamation: George Pell pursues legal action over a Deveny tweet

Cardinal George Pell’s lawyers pursued legal action against Twitter after comedian Catherine Deveny tweeted a photo which Pell’s lawyers say “conveys … seriously defamatory imputations”.

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Heartland launches legal action against climate change bloggers, journos

Controversial US think tank the Heartland Institute has sent legal letters to bloggers and writers who reported on the release of the leaked Heartland Institute documents last week.

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Advice to Mick Molloy: fake your apology better next time

Mick Molloy and Network Ten have lost their defamation battle against Adelaide identity Nicole Cornes in a ruling that could have far ranging implications for free speech.

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A landmark legal test case?

Christopher Pyne said that Marieke Hardy’s piece published about him last year bothered him “not in the least bit.” So why is he now threatening to sue?

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Posetti receives letter of demand from Chris Mitchell, and a special invitation

The editor in Chief of The Australian newspaper, Chris Mitchell, has sent a letter of demand to journalism academic, Julie Posetti, confirming he will pursue her for defamation over a series of tweets .

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Note to The Australian: Twitter is not a newspaper

When Oz editor Chris Mitchell complains that Julie Posetti didn’t contact him to get his side of the story before tweeting, he completely misses the point.

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Rundle: Mitchell’s own goal on the eco fascist line

If the editor of The Australian firms up defamation law as regards the metaphorical use of the “fascist” tag, then he will have handed innumerable people a precedent with which to target every News Ltd columnist and blogger who’s muttered about “greenshirts”, eco-Nazis or the like.

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Should Kevin Andrews be personally liable if he’s defamed Haneef?

Dr Haneef intends to sure for false imprisonment and defamation. To defend the suit Kevin Andrews will have to convince Robert McClelland that the claims against him fit the Commonwealth guidelines for ministerial indemnity.

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Why Allen & Unwin should have settled Crikey-style

The same group of barristers who once defended Crikey in a legal blitz barristers again came together in the long-running defamation action that saw barrister Dyson Hore-Lacy awarded $630,000 in damages from publisher Allen & Unwin for Phil Cleary’s book Getting Away With Murder.

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Rundle: I just don’t understand liberals

I have to admit, after years of studying them in the wild, I don’t understand liberals, writes Guy Rundle. They raise their banner to stoutly defend freedom in all its manifestations but when push comes to shove, they collapse back in fear of what might happen if things get “out of control”.

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Moves to define “journalism” in the eyes of the law

Astonishingly there is no definition of journalism in Australian law. That’s one of the revelations in the ALRC’s paper on privacy law reform and it’s of great relevance because the Commission wants to define journalism in a way that will reduce the media’s capacity to report freely.

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Wh-res-and-all Packer bio a triumph of defamation reform

The republishing of Paul Barry’s biography on Kerry Packer is a fascinating example of the chilling effect of the old defamation laws.

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