World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers

UK news media warn that data rules are used to curb freedom of expression

World News Publishing Focus

World News Publishing Focus
Your Guide to the Changing Media Landscape

UK news media warn that data rules are used to curb freedom of expression

Publishers say that they are receiving an increasing number data protection complaints alongside libel, privacy and other claims, and that data laws are used to suppress or change information, or to try to force journalists to hand over personal data gathered during their reporting process, the Financial Times reported.

Although news publishers in Britain are protected by exemptions, these may no longer offer sufficient protection as claimants are increasingly testing data privacy rules in courts, searching for vulnerabilities. Publishers are specifically worried that new data privacy rules, coming into force next May, will give claimants further power to pursue legal action.

Moreover, the prerequisites for data protection claims are lower than for libel cases. According to a media barrister who spoke to the Financial Times, it has become “standard practice” to add a data protection claim in libel and privacy cases.


Teemu Henriksson's picture

Teemu Henriksson


2017-10-18 11:27

Author information

The news publishing industry is experiencing transformation at an ever-growing pace, with new policy issues arising as the landscape changes.

We will be examining policy discussions that will define the news publishing environment of the future, the key topics being internet governance, privacy and copyright. Click here to learn more about our work.

WAN-IFRA Media Policy team and experts.

© 2020 WAN-IFRA - World Association of News Publishers

Footer Navigation