As well as quotes in the the Guardian and the Telegraph, I am also quoted in the Daily Mail today, discussing the same issue of libel law and corporations.
Libel lawyer and Tory MP Sir Edward Garnier has put down amendments to the Government’s Defamation Bill that would remove key sections designed to boost freedom of speech. … Robert Sharp, of English PEN, another group calling for change to protect freedom of speech, said both subclauses were essential ‘to stop the inequality of arms that corporations use’.
I’ve been quoted in newspapers twice this week.
Yesterday, the Libel Reform Campaign learnt that Sir Edward Garnier MP was seeking to remove essential provisions from the Defamation Bill. The Guardian asked me to comment:
Robert Sharp, head of campaigns and communications for English PEN, said both subclauses were essential “to stop the inequality of arms that corporations use. They use the libel law for PR.”
Sharp pointed out that Garnier does not have the full support of his party, with Tory peer Lord Mawhinney having given his support to the companies’ clause saying the fact they could sue anyone without any prima facie proof of financial damage was “a form of bullying”.
The quote from Lord Mawhinney was during a House of Lords debate on the Defamation Bill, which I attended.
I was also quoted in the Sunday Telegraph last weekend, in a piece by Andrew Gilligan about the Royal Charter and Hacked Off. I am less pleased about that one, though – it is a story about process, not policy.