Laws against ‘scandalising the court’ are intended to prevent conduct that may undermine public confidence in the courts.
Under an archaic law, people can still be punished for 'scandalising the court' or publicly criticising a judge's ruling. It's time for this law to be revisited.
Today on Media Files we look at the suppression order that prevented the Australian media reporting the Pell case - and why rushing to judge-only criminal trials may be a mistake.
Pell trial reporters, a judge and a media lawyer on why the suppression order debate is far from over.
The Conversation, CC BY 79.9 MB (download)
On the day George Pell was sentenced, several experts with wide-ranging experiences of suppression orders discussed how they affect the public’s right to know and whether the laws should be reformed.
The digital age has made the idea of a fair trial, balanced with open justice, even more difficult.
While media outlets rail against being prohibited from reporting on certain cases, it is about striking a difficult balance between open justice and a fair trial.
Material in a new media law textbook was manually redacted with a black felt pen after it inadvertently breached a suppression order.
It is hard to inquire about a suppression order you do not know exists because discussion of its existence and contents has been suppressed.
Broadcaster Derryn Hinch has been found guilty of breaching court suppression orders in the past. Does justice need to be seen in order to be truly done?
The Victorian state parliament is currently considering the Open Courts Bill (2013) after questions have been raised about just how much transparency is needed in the justice system. The bill, proposed…