Media Law Handbook
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Freedom of speech has never been an absolute value in the political and legal landscape - not in Australia, and not anywhere else. Laws on defamation, blasphemy, copyright, obscenity, incitement, secrecy, contempt, racial vilification and sedition are some of the laws that commonly impinge on freedom of speech. These laws exist to protect countervailing interests that may deserve priority over freedom of speech in the event of a conflict between the two. Our laws reflect the belief that the need for social cohesion and the need to maintain public order require limitations on freedom of speech where this freedom may lead to a breach of the peace. It accepts that words, images and information can seriously injure individuals and institutions and their economic and social wellbeing. As more Australian jurisdictions embrace the need for the protection of human rights through charters and similar instruments, freedom of speech - a fragile creature of innovative judicial thinking - is gaining a stronger foothold in the statute books. This text incorporates discussion of recent amendments including the law pertaining to journalists' confidential sources. The Media Law Handbook considers the laws that impact on freedom of speech and is an essential guide for journalists and other engaged in the media.
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Loosening the Shackles of the Truth Defence on Freedom of Speech: Making Defamation Law's Truth Defence More User Friendly for Media DefendantsFernandez, Joseph (2010)The truth defence is defamation law's oldest defence but it remains the least attractive defence to Australian media defendants because of its onerous threshold for success. The paper argues that the shackles on the truth ...
Fernandez, Joseph (2013)Media Law In Australia discusses an array of laws that impact on the media’s publishing activities. It focuses on the laws that media professionals and others who are preparing publication content must consider. A national ...
The Ridd Case and the model code for the protection of free speech and academic freedom: Wins for academic freedom or losses for university codes of conduct and respectful and courteous behaviour?Guthrie, Robert ; Levine, Pnina (2020)A successful claim for unlawful dismissal and an award of significant damages and pecuniary penalties in favour of Professor Ridd against James Cook University ('JCU') in the Federal Court has attracted attention in the ...