Imputations    April 21, 2020

Nikolic v Nationwide News

Summary dismissal of a claim against The Australian's?"Cut and Paste" section ... Tolerant and progressive plaintiff held out to be associated with the "No" case for marriage equality "No" ... Online identity theft using Twitter ... Unlikely to be lowered in public estimation since 40 percent of plebiscite voters were opposed to marriage equality ... Moral and social mores ... Inferences upon inferences ... Pleadings against Twitter, Google and Yahoo to be amended ... Stephen Murray reports ... more

 

Seminars, interviews & commentary    April 20, 2020

Ontario’s fresh approach to defamation reform

Law Commission of Ontario's proposals for defamation reform in the internet age ... Recommendation against a serious harm threshold ... Access to justice considerations ... Anti-SLAPP legislation replaces restrictions on the right of corporations to sue ... A fresh approach to remedies ... Takedown and interlocutory takedown orders ... A new definition of "publication" ... Obligations for intermediate platforms ... Professor David Rolph on the scope of an important report ... more

 

Interlocutory/Case-Management    April 19, 2020

Ben Roberts-Smith v Fairfax Media Publications; Ben Roberts-Smith v The Age Company Pty Ltd; Ben Roberts-Smith v Federal Capital Press; Ben Roberts-Smith v Jonathan Pearlman

National security and COVID-19 delay trial ... Dates vacated ... Attorney General gives notice under the National Security Information Act ... Parties seeking agreement on disclosure of information related to national security ... Not possible for the trial to be conducted remotely ... Difficulties with evidence from witnesses in Afghanistan ... Dispute over notices to produce ... Stephen Murray reports ... more

 

Appeals    April 19, 2020

Feldman v Polaris Media Pty Ltd as Trustee of the Polaris Media Trust t/as The Australian Jewish News

NSW Court of Appeal ... Defamation ... Three separate judgments with different reasons for rejecting the appeal ... Justification, contextual truth, honest opinion, statutory qualified privilege and fair report - all in contention ... $100,000 threshold ... Reasonableness ... Where one of the respondents had died pending the appeal outcome ... Stephen Murray reports? ... more

 

Injunctions    April 15, 2020

Smethurst v Commissioner of Police

High Court unanimously finds that the search warrant executed at the home of News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst was invalid ... Warrant was ambiguous ... "Interests of the Commonwealth" misunderstood ... Authorisation of the search impossibly wide ... Court divided on the question of relief ... Majority rejected the application for an injunction and the return of the improperly seized material ... Equitable principles ... The Constitution ... Fundamental disagreement on principles of constitutional liberty ... Stephen Murray reports ... more

 

Damages    April 14, 2020

Darwin v Norman

NSW Supreme Court ... Damages of $400,000 to leaders of a failed Nimbin "Truthology" commune ... Article and blog posts on The Nimbin Times ... Defendant invested $120,000 in the project ... No planning permission ... Money never recouped ... Imputations included that the plaintiffs were fraudsters, criminals, liars, a gang of thieves ... Unsuccessful truth defence ... Janek Drevikovsky reports ... more

 

Seminars, interviews & commentary    April 13, 2020

The great reform picnic

Defamation lawyer Graham Hryce responds to Bruce Connell's critique, The plaintiff's perspective ... Defamation law ... Media responsible for its own predicament ... Pointless inquiries and fanciful recommendations? ... The false dawn of Theophanous ... Gradual emasculation of defences by the courts ... Latest reform proposals unlikely to assist media defendants ... more

 

Seminars, interviews & commentary    April 13, 2020

A statement of claim should not serve as a concerns notice

The fallout from the NSW appeal court's decisions in Mohareb and Zoef ... Court's focus on text fails to recognise the wider context ... Outcome contrary to case management objectives ... Threat to uniformity ... Procedural differences in other jurisdictions ... Draft provisions on concerns notices in model defamation amendments are insufficient ... Michael Douglas argues that the Court of Appeal decisions will result in more litigation and expense ... more

 

Costs    April 12, 2020

Australian Broadcasting Corporation v Kane

ABC's unsuccessful application for indemnity costs ... Injunction application pending decision whether to appeal Justice Abraham's rejection to the challenge of the AFP search warrant ... Broadcaster's decision not to appeal ... Alleged uncooperative conduct of the AFP ... Not unreasonable that the AFP required the ABC to enliven the court's jurisdiction ... Stephen Murray reports ... more

 

Trial reports    April 11, 2020

Farshad Amirbeaggi v Fairfax Media Publications & Anor

Settlement ... Virtual court hears rainmaker solicitor's gross revenue drops by half ... Debt dispute with Italian construction figure ... Fears for personal safety ... Fair report defences dropped ... Justice Rares enters verdict and judgment for Amirbeaggi ... Stephen Murray reports ... more

 

Trial reports    April 11, 2020

Farshad Amirbeaggi v Fairfax Media Publications & Anor

Federal Court defamation trial ... "Rainmaking" solicitor told police he feared for his life ...?Sydney Morning Herald report claimed that the applicant had not been threatened ... Dispute over a debt ... Standover man ... Advice to move to California ... Suicidal feelings ... Concerns about the way he was treated by judges ... Difficulty attracting staff ... Stephen Murray reports ... more

 

Trial reports    April 7, 2020

Atlas Advisors Pty Ltd & Anor v Australian Financial News Pty Ltd & Anor

Federal Court ... Day three of defamation trial ... Allegation that fund manager was intimidated by marketer for online Chinese financial news service ... Perceived threat of bad publicity in retaliation for applicant not agreeing to a sponsorship arrangement ... Shadow banks ... Online readership data ... Failure of Atlas employee to give evidence ... Final submissions later ... Stephen Murray reports ... more