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Archive for April, 2013

Defamation and satire

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

Memo to anyone thinking of suing or threatening someone else for defamation after that person made fun of them.
Don’t.
It’s not that the law clearly protects humorous speech and satire. That question is a bit vexed. It’s defamatory to say something that brings another person into ridicule. So it looks like that is fairly easily satisfied. Actually, those […]

Information-sharing by the government: deja vu

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

Radio NZ is reporting that:
The Government is considering a massive expansion of data-sharing between ministries and agencies and has asked the Treasury to assess the potential impact on people’s privacy.
This seems to be a closely-related extension to the recent information-sharing legislation, which was preceded by a ministerial briefing on information-sharing by the Law Commission.
So, why this:
The […]

Review of law of contempt: deja vu

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

The Law Commission has announced that it will review NZ’s laws of contempt of court. This will involve a discussion paper about the issues, to be issued next year.
I wonder how this fits with another issues/discussion paper commissioned by the government and issued almost exactly two years ago: Reforming the New Zealand Law of Contempt […]

Interim injunction against EQC blogger

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

I feel as if I write this same thing about once every year. Someone rushes to court to get an injunction preventing the release of information. It’s based on breach of confidence. Here it’s the Earthquake Commission seeking to prevent the release of a database containing assessments about 83,000 Christchurch claims.
The court grants the injunction, […]

Wha…?

Sunday, April 7th, 2013

I confess I’m entirely befuddled by the Dominion Post’s front-page lead on Saturday, “Prosecution for breaching paedophile’s rights”. Can someone help me out here?
Isn’t the story conflating the Commission with the Office of Human Rights Proceedings, an independent office within the HRC? But why is the Office of Human Rights Proceedings bringing a “prosecution”? Does […]

Digital harrassment remedies coming

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

Justice Minister Judith Collins has (by and large) accepted the Law Commission’s recommendations to better protect victims of cyber-harrassment. (I have explained and defended and critiqued and defended again the Law Commission’s proposals elsewhere).
Note that this is not the same as the Law Commission’s recently confirmed plan to set up a one-stop regulator for the news […]

Live public debates on our Constitution

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

Debating the Constitution
During April and May, the NZ Centre for Public Law (with generous support and funding from the NZ Law Foundation) will host a series of debates on issues raised by the Government’s review of the New Zealand constitution. The debates will be broadcast on Radio NZ National. Join us on VUW Kelburn […]