The Internet’s immediacy and global reach means reputations can be ruined with the click of a mouse. The courts have just begun to grapple with allegations of defamation on the Internet, but it’s clear publishers and writers risk being sued in faraway countries. And each “hit” to access archived material could be considered re-publication of a libel, extending the risk of a lawsuit far into the future. By David Crerar.
Continue Reading Internet libel threat transcends time, space
Search warrant files contain a wealth of information about police investigations and allegations of wrongdoing. While warrants are often sealed in high-profile cases, media organizations are winning court battles to bring their contents to light. By Dean Jobb.
Continue Reading Lifting the lid off search warrants
A legal precedent on the disclosure of evidence means what a journalist tells the police or other investigators could wind up as Exhibit A in court. A word to the wise – remember, anything you say or do could be used against you. By Dean Jobb.
Continue Reading Beware of police officers asking questions
A committee of Nova Scotia judges and journalists has decided that court officials should decide which reporters and media organizations can use cameras and tape recorders at the Law Courts building in Halifax, the province’s busiest courthouse. As Ainslie MacLellan reports in the King’s JournalismReview, journalists haven’t protested but media lawyers warn the plan sets a bad precedent.
Continue Reading N.S. judges demand media accreditation
An Ontario judge has struckdown laws that empowered the RCMP to raid the home of Ottawa Citizen reporter Juliet O’Neill, in a bid to expose the source of a leak about the Mahar Ararcase. Justice Lynn Ratushney ruled that sections of the Security and Information Act designed to crack down on leaks of information violate the Charter right to freedom of the press. The federal government will not appeal. The Canadian Association of Journalists calls the ruling“an historic victory for media freedom.”
>>Tony Burman, editor in chief of CBC News, comments.
>>Lawyer Wendy Wagner, who acted for the Ottawa Citizen, offers a summary of the ruling.
>>Read Justice Ratushney’s Oct. 19, 2006 ruling.
Continue Reading Judge blocks bid to expose Citizen source