Wednesday, 26 May 2010


It seems that the new Government are to have a look at the Libel Laws and no doubt changes will be made.  We are reminded of two quotations:

There is a wide difference between speaking to deceive, and being silent to be impenetrable.

I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.


IRONSIDE said...

A lie is a lie even if everyone believes.

The truth is still the truth even though NO ONE believes.

Author unknown

Blogger said...

Received from Mike and Sile by mail

This is a very brief note to make sure you saw the exciting news that Lord Anthony Lester QC, the architect of the Human Rights Act, has announced his intention to introduce a Private Members’ Defamation Bill in the House of Lords this week. He explains why he is doing this in the Times this morning (read it here) and on the Today programme (listen to it here).

The legislation being proposed in Lord Lester’s Bill, and expected to be mentioned in the Queen’s Speech tomorrow, aims to solve the problems our campaign has highlighted and which politicians have been debating since 1938 without doing enough to solve them. This bill is the first attempt in a century at redrafting the laws to include stronger, clearer defences to protect free speech and to bring the laws up to date for the information age.

It’s thanks to your support of the campaign that the three main parties committed to libel reform in their election manifestos, and now we are near to having a bill in Parliament. We need to push the Government to tell us clearly what reforms it will support.

The bill will be published on Thursday 27th May. We will email you with more details but keep an eye out for other coverage on this in the meantime, for example Lord Lester will be interviewed on the Times website this afternoon and Simon Singh is writing about this for the Telegraph tomorrow.

Blogger said...

Update from Mike and Sile:

A Libel Reform Bill has been tabled in the House of Lords.

Lord Lester QC has published a Private Members’ Defamation Bill to reform England’s outdated and unjust libel laws. This is the first attempt in over a century to put forward a wholesale redraft of our libel laws to address many of the issues our campaign has highlighted.

Lord Lester’s Bill covers a great deal of the recommendations of the Libel Reform Campaign including a statutory defence for responsible publication on a matter of public interest; clarifying the defences of justification and fair comment, which will be renamed as ‘truth’ and ‘honest opinion’.

The Bill will also:

Require claimants to provide evidence their reputation was damaged by an alleged libel before they can bring a case forward (they don’t have to do this at present) and make corporations prove financial damage before they can sue.

Address the problems introduced by the rise of the internet and the culture of online publication including the multiple publication rule that makes each download a fresh instance of libel, and alter the responsibility of forum hosts for what is posted on their sites.

Encourage the speedy settlement of disputes without parties having to bring in costly lawyers.

Promote the speedy settlement of disputes without recourse to the courts.

There is a great piece by Lord Lester on why he is doing this now.

And Simon Singh has written his thoughts on the bill.

Thanks to your support we’ve made the case that libel law reform is an issue politicians know they have to act on.

There is widespread Parliamentary support for reform … the majority of eligible MPs signed up to an EDM supporting libel law reform in the last Parliament.

There were general election manifesto commitments to reform from the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, and Labour.

Now, there is a coalition Government promise to reform the libel laws in the Queen’s Speech …

…But we need new libel laws!

In light of Lord Lester’s Bill, the Libel Reform Campaign is asking: will the Government now make clear its plans for reform? Will it support, adopt or develop this Bill?

Help us keep the pressure on. Write to your MP asking them what the Government intends to do.

PS - for more details of the bill and complete coverage see

IRONSIDE said...

The days and weeks to follow may see a likeness between these two men. Both have been suspects in a death . Both had good connections. Both have said the words' There is nothing to implicate me in her death'...Time will tell

S Holmes said...

Does this theory still hold water after all we have heard over the past three years?

Anonymous said...

Here is a little link that makes good reading:

Ironside said...

Textusas theory and the idea of the McCanns being swingers from an Elite group of Doctors.

It was an ex PJ who first revealed the Mccanns were swingers on Panorama, he would not name his source from Scotland Yard.

Ironside said...

I was hoping against hope they had a little shame...but no.