07w46:4 Public Interest

by timothy. 1 Comment

From today’s Mediascout, by Rishi Hargovan:

The Globe fronts and the Star goes inside with a court ruling that could substantially increase freedom of the press in Canada. In a unanimous, precedent-setting ruling, the Ontario Court of Appeal established “benefiting the public interest” as a defence against defamation charges. The ruling, which only applies in Ontario, introduces a principle that will help the media report controversial allegations when it is in the public interest to do so. Currently, journalists and media outlets often censor themselves, hesitating to publish material they honestly believe to be true solely because they fear a lawsuit. No matter how strong the story, litigation is costly and it is difficult to prove such facts to the standards of the courts—where there is zero room for error. Now the standard would be that journalists would have not have to prove that they were right, only that they were acting responsibly. The Globe quotes Justice Robert Sharpe: “…[W]here a media defendant can show that it acted in accordance with the standards of responsible journalism in publishing a story that the public was entitled to hear, it has a defence, even if it got some of its facts wrong.”

Adopted in other major common law countries around the world, the ruling marks the first time a Canadian court has taken this approach and increases the likelihood courts in other Canadian jurisdictions will follow suit. The impact will likely be a greater propensity to publish and air controversial stories of public import, the Globe’s lawyer Peter Jacobsen told the paper. In a peculiar twist, the Star reports, the paper involved in this specific case, the Citizen, cannot take advantage of the new defence. The legal system’s emphasis on finality in proceedings would make it unfair to re-open the trial and let the paper go back and use the defence. The court, however, did not go as far media organizations would have liked. The media had argued in court for defamation to require evidence of malice to be proven—a difficult element to prove.

Also, from the CNW Group:

Attention News Editors:
Another Prime Minister, The Hon. Stephen Harper is noted in default in a Libel action, as well as the Hon. Tony Clement, Governor General Michaelle Jean, Morris Rosenberg, the Deputy Minister of Health, three of his staff and others BELLEVILLE, ON, Nov. 14 /CNW Telbec/ – Trueman Tuck and his company, Freedom of Choice in Health Care Inc., sued the above noted parties November 15, 2006 for $1,050,000 and the Department of Justice lawyers handling the matter failed to file a defense.

Citizens of Canada are getting used to this type of above the Rule of Law arrogance by the Prime Ministers of Canada.

Trueman Tuck filed the lawsuit to stop what he alleges are false allegations of e-coli contamination of a product that Trueman Tuck and his company sell. Trueman Tuck alleges that the criminal investigative federal officials working in the Health Canada Inspectorate regularly create bogus allegations of harm that have no probable scientific cause.

Trueman Tuck also criticized the Conservative Government, including the Prime Minister for their total failure since taking office to investigate the well documented cases of malicious, unlawful and out of jurisdiction attacks on dietary food supplement small family businesses by the local officials of Health Canada and the total failure of the Managers, Director Generals, ADMs, DMs and responsible Ministers to investigate and intervene.

Complaints have been made to various federal oversight committees, the Cabinet, the Senate, the Governor-General and the Queen personally without any response.

The Defendants were noted in default and a requisition for default judgment has been filed with the Picton, Ontario Superior Court.

For further information: Trueman Tuck, (613) 771-1797,
www.truemantuck.ca, www.healthcanadaabuse.com

One Response to 07w46:4 Public Interest

  1. Melissa says:

    I think that Mr. Tuck has reserved a pile of charcoal to give out to his friends in the Justice Ministry this X-Mas. There doesn’t seem to be a whole bunch of things to do in Belleville this Friday, so everyone should head for the courthouse at 10:00 a.m. to hear how it goes.

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