The draft Bill is to protect NGOs, scientists, bloggers and authors writing in the public interest; to introduce a strict test to ensure that bullying libel claims get thrown out early; to tackle the problem of corporations using the laws to silence criticism and to bring the law up to date for the internet age. If the Government’s report doesn’t go far enough on these issues, we will have to take action.Time is running out to make the case for libel reform - with the deadline looming for legislation to be included in the Queen’s Speech.
The Libel Reform Campaign is urging those who have yet to do so to write to their MPs urging them to back the case for libel reform.
As Press Gazette has previously reported, this is a once in a generation opportunity to reform the libel system and tackle abuses such as: libel tourism, the CFA ransom factor, the huge costs generally of defending libel actions and the lack of legal protection for serious investigative journalism in the public interest.
The draft Defamation Bill also proposed measures to stop scientists who speak out on matters of public health spending years, and hundreds of thousands of their own money, being dragged through the libel courts.
According to the Libel Reform Campaign, publication of the Government report on the draft Defamation Bill is now expected “any day”....read more