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Media Law News

09 January 2017:


Listen back to Andrea Martin of MediaLawyer on The Pat Kenny Show on Newstalk FM on 09 January 2017 as she discusses the law and Social Media with Jonathan Healy. (Tip: drag the red progress bar at the top of the Newstalk screen approx half way across the page to jump to the start of the interview).

09 August 2015


Sky Atlantic faces a higher risk of legal action in Ireland and Northern Ireland than in the UK by broadcasting a documentary about Scientology on 21 September next. The Sunday Times of 09 August asked Sarah Kieran of MediaLawyer why.

07 August 2015:


Following Denis O'Brien's legal threat against Waterford Whispers News, Sarah Kieran, MediaLawyer Consultant Solicitor, was interviewed on RTE Radio One's Morning Ireland about the legal pitfalls facing satirists in Ireland. The item was also covered by The Irish Examiner online and Today FM.

03 September 2014:


Andrea Martin, Principal of MediaLawyer Solicitors, was interviewed on RTE One's Six One News on 02.09.2014 to comment on the story that the FBI and Apple are investigating the posting online of hundreds of private photos belonging to singers, actresses and models. Due to the large number of celebrities involved it is more likely the leak is due to a security breach on a central storage facility, possibly a cloud-based one, rather than the hacking of individual accounts.

Read MediaLawyer's Quick Bulletin for more information about cloud based storage and Irish privacy law.

26 June 2014:

Andrea Martin from MediaLawyer was asked about Social Media in HR for this article which appeared in The Sunday Independent – Business Section.

February 2013:

MR v The Registrar General of Births Deaths and Marraiges (heard in February 2013) is significant because of the ruling given regarding the reporting of Family Law cases where there is a significant matter of public interest, but also because it is the first judgement in which an Irish High Court Judge has imposed restrictions on the contemporaneous reporting of a case on social media.

Following a hearing on the right of the media to report on this Family Law case, the Judge was persuaded by the media that there should be restrictions imposed on the contemporaneous reporting of the case.

The restrictions on reporting imposed, were as follows:
  • The parties to the proceedings were not to be identified.
  • The private evidence given by the parties was not to be reported.
  • There was to be no contemporaneous reporting on social media outlets such as Twitter.
  • Other reports could only be made at the end of the Court sessions, i.e. no reporting about evidence given between 11am-1pm until 1pm and no reporting of evidence given between 2-4pm until after 4pm.
The Court Reporting Issues:

This case was unusual in that neither the Status of Childrens Act 1987 nor the Guardianship of Infants Act 1964 specify that applications made under these statutes must automatically be held in camera. In order for such hearings to be held in camera parties to the applications must seek leave from the Court to have them held in camera.

In this case The Sunday Times applied to the Court to report on the cases due to the significant public interest aspect of the application. The judge refused to grant such leave even though parties to the proceedings had not made an application to have the case held in camera.

On this occasion the judge told the lawyers for the media to look at the Courts Supplemental Provisions 2004 which allowed for some reporting of Family Law proceedings but was not applicable to journalistic reporting.

Three days after the commencement of the hearing the applicants applied to have the case held in camera but stated tthe applicants felt some aspects of the case could be reported. Gerard Durcan, SC for the applicants, pointed to case law in the UK under the Mental Health Act that allowed for a judge to prescribe certain restrictions and provide guidelines as to what can and cannot be reported about a case. His argument was that a balance between the private interest of the parties and the public interest could be achieved by limited reporting of the proceedings subject to strict reporting restrictions and directions imposed by the Court. With this in mind the judge allowed reporting of the case by specified members of the media as long as it was carried out within the parameters agreed to by the parties to the case and the media.


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