NEWS
New report on protecting the media against Slapps

What measures can be introduced to protect journalists facing vexatious legal actions?

21 Sep 2020
BY JESSICA Ní MHAINíN

Index on Censorship has launched its second report, Breaking the Silence, as part of its ongoing research into a type of vexatious legal action known as a Slapp – strategic lawsuit against public participation. The research focuses on the extent to which journalists and media outlets in Europe are being affected by Slapps, and on what can be done to protect them.

Breaking the Silence outlines a series of concerns raised by media lawyers during a roundtable hosted by Index on Censorship in July, and puts forward six measures that would help prevent Slapps from having an impact. One of the most extensive measures is the introduction of anti-Slapps legislation. “Free speech is vastly protected by the anti-Slapp statute – it’s a night and day difference,” United States-based lawyer, Thomas R. Burke, told the roundtable participants as he outlined the legislation that was enacted in California in 1992.

“We are indebted to the lawyers and legal experts who shared their time and insights with us,” said senior policy research and advocacy officer, Jessica Ní Mhainín, who authored the report. “We hope that policymakers will pay heed to the serious threat that Slapps are posing to freedom of expression, rule of law, and democracy, and consider the measures that are proposed in this report.”

Read the full report.

Jessica Ní Mhainín

Comments are closed.

Index logo white

Join us to protect and promote freedom of speech in the UK and across the world.
Since 1972, Index on Censorship has been leading the campaign for free expression.
Our award-winning magazine originally provided the platform for the untold stories of dissidents and resistance from behind the Iron Curtain and is now a home for some of the greatest campaigning writers of our age.
Journalistic freedom, artistic expression, the right to protest, the right to speak your mind, wherever you live.  These are the founding principles of Index on Censorship.
So join us, by subscribing to our newsletter or making a donation, to use your voice to ensure that everyone else can be heard too.
Go to the Index on Censorship home page