Guidelines

Section 18: The Law

Privacy

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18.5

The Human Rights Act, which came into effect in 2000, includes a right to privacy.

Individuals can now take action to enforce that right.  Often, they will ask the court to grant an injunction (or "interdict" in Scotland) to stop true stories about their private lives being made public.

If there is a reasonable expectation of privacy, the court will seek to balance the individual's right to privacy against the media's right to freedom of expression.

When broadcasting a story which contains private information, each piece of private information will need to be considered separately.  If private information is conveyed by pictures, these will be subjected to special scrutiny.

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