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Freedom of Expression

Message from Minister Sean Sherlock to All TDs and Senators

Sent this evening. Legitimate Copyright Protection in Ireland: not SOPA – Sherlock We all subscribe to the freedoms, the opportunities and the access to information that the Internet provides us with. Ireland is home to some of the world’s most innovative internet companies and we are determined to grow our reputation as a location where smart people and these smart companies can continue to innovate in this fast moving arena. The last thing innovators need is a culture where the […]

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Stop SOPA Ireland: We must have Openness, not murky backroom deals

You will have noticed the black banner across the top of our site this week. You may also have noticed the sudden flurry of media appearances and debates on radio around the issue of Minister of State Sean Sherlock’s plan to introduce a law to allow the music labels (and other copyright holders) to seek injunctions forcing Irish ISPs to block access to sites they don’t like. “I will introduce this imminently, by the end of January.”– Minister Sherlock, Sunday […]

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Secret(ive) Courts

Construction may be everything; if the object of criticism thinks the criticism may lower him/her in the estimation of right-thinking members of the community he/she may sue for defamation.

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Truth?

Domestically, what is in issue is this: on what possible moral basis does the Oireachtas claim the right to restrict the public expression of opinion?

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Appearances

Here in Ireland, if there were to be a reprise of that struggle we can not be sure that the courts’ response might not be equally inadequate.

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The Picture of Brian Cowen

One can imagine Mr. Cowen’s feelings when he learned of the hanging of two pictures of him in public, in which pictures he was shown, by implication only, as naked; firstly, possibly in the loo and secondly, holding his underpants.

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Piltdown Man

It is highly speculative, but an attractive thought, that the Zeitgeist of the early twentieth century produced or induced two events; the development of the modern law of Negligence and the perversion of truth by the Piltdown Man hoax. They are connected in one respect; a lawyer was at the centre of each event. Lord Atkin, in the House of Lords, delivered the seminal judgement in Donoghue v Stevenson, and Charles Dawson, a solicitor, “found” the skull of Piltdown Man […]

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12th January 9 A.D.

In the face of power, formally judicial or otherwise, it is necessary to be circumspect.

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Say nothing rather than something

Consequently, a reporter should not look for the “core” of his or her report in the pleadings or in the characterisation of the case by counsel or in some diatribe by the judge (unless he or she is working for a “red-top”; then, always go for the diatribe).

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Opinionated

There is also the question of talent. Commonly we “know�? what we have to find out, before we find it out. Fortune favours the prepared mind.

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