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Archive for December, 2007

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Solicitor-General to prosecute Fairfax for contempt

Friday, December 21st, 2007

The DomPost is reporting that the papers that ran the “terrorism files” story are to be prosecuted for contempt. The S-G has also set his sights on DomPost editor Tim Pankhurst, but not the editors of the Press or the Waikato Times.
The essence of the allegation is that the stories will interfere with the defendants’ […]

Editors and name suppression

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

Are editors liable if their publications breach name suppression? Not if they didn’t read the story, and it was reasonable for them not to, according to a British case. The story identified the victim of a sex offence. But the editor said he hadn’t read it. It was on page 35, and the editor had been […]

Has John Edwards ripped off Coldplay’s “Clocks” too?

Friday, December 14th, 2007

Have a gander at this. Has US Presidential candidate John Edwards breached Coldplay’s copyright like John Key did? Or has his production team done just enough to tweak the track?

Journalist sacked for swearing at boss

Friday, December 14th, 2007

The Employment Relations Authority has upheld the Press’s sacking of sports journalist John Coffey. Sports editor Coen Lammers had added in some words to one of his cricket stories. The words were “New Zealand’s youngest in a decade”. In fact, the phrase should have been “New Zealand’s youngest in over half a century”.
When he saw […]

Christians vs South Park: the sequel

Friday, December 14th, 2007

And I’m afraid it’s 2-0 to South Park.
The BSA has once again refused to uphold a complaint against a sacreligious South Park show.
In the episode complained about, a cut-out picture of Jesus says to George Bush “Look at me, I’m Jesus. Would you like me to crap on you Mr Bush?”, and then proceeds to […]

DomPost editor says a bunch of interesting stuff

Wednesday, December 12th, 2007

DomPost editor Tim Pankhurst gave a very interesting keynote address at the Jeanz conference called “The Power of Print”. Here are some highlights:
The relevance of print 
The DomPost’s coverage of Louise Nicholas, Donna Awatere Huata, the Capital and Coast Health issues and the “Terrorism files” shows that print has “undiminished power” – in the sense that these […]

Has fairness swallowed privacy?

Tuesday, December 11th, 2007

What would you do with this complaint?
During a Close Up item about the “naming and shaming” of drunk drivers by a Wellington newspaper, a woman was approached outside court after being convicted of her second drink driving offence. Although the woman declined to be interviewed for fear of losing her job, she was shown running […]

This would be the most fascinating defamation case ever…

Monday, December 10th, 2007

In her book and in media interviews, Louise Nicholas calls Clint Rickards a rapist. He calls her a liar who needs help.
If one of them were to sue the other for defamation, it would be a hell of a bunfight.
The criminal case hasn’t put these issues to bed. A defamation lawsuit would be decided on […]

Media criticism from an Ombudsman

Thursday, December 6th, 2007

Some damning quotes about the performance of the media from Ombudsman Mel Smith’s report into the justice sector:

The criminal justice system is complex and difficult. Unfortunately the rhetoric that we hear in the media and elsewhere almost daily tends to convey an impression that there is some simple answer to crime and criminal justice. That is […]

Free speech audit in Australia

Thursday, December 6th, 2007

Former NSW Ombudsman Irene Moss has conducted an audit into the state of free speech in Australia and concluded that “free speech and media freedom are being whittled away by gradual and sometimes almost imperceptible degrees.”
I confess I’m always a bit suspicious of death-by-a-thousand-cuts claims, since they often overlook or underestimate the ways in which free speech […]

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