Hush hush…

“I’ve just bought myself a copy of the brand new edition of Tugendhat and Christie on The Law of Privacy and The Media,” said OldSmoothie today. “I’m thinking of putting myself out as a privacy expert.”

“But you’re not,” said BusyBody.

“Ah, but that’s not a problem where everything’s secret,” he replied. “Who’s to know that I haven’t been involved in any number of top secret cases when even the existence of the injunctions can’t be reported?”

“We’ll know.”

“And the very fact that no-one’s heard of me in that particular area of law could even be taken as evidence of quite how successful I’ve been at keeping things hush hush.”

“Except it isn’t,” persisted BusyBody.

“I’d pay for a superinjunction on OldSmoothie,” said UpTights. “Imagine if we could somehow zap him out of existence just through a tiddly little matter of a court order.”

“Now there’s a thought,” said BusyBody.

“I’d happily have a superinjunction against all mention of West Ham’s results at the moment,” said Teflon.

“Maybe we could all just vote on Twitter as to who and what is to be injuncted. Kind of a new Super Press Complaints Commission that might actually work,” said TheBusker.

“It’s the name that gets me,” said BusyBody. “Like it’s some kind of super-hero of an injunction.”

“Whose Kryptonite is Twitter,” said TheBusker.

“It always sounds to me like it was invented by HeadofChambers’s wife at one of her little get-togethers for ladies who lunch inside the gin belt,” said TheVamp. “You know, all jolly hockey sticks, cucumber sandwiches and super-duper inunctions, don’t you know.”

“Bit like Weston-Super-Duper-Mare,” said TheBusker.

“What I find funny,” said Teflon, “is that all the media organisations are now sent the secret equivalent of press releases by the high court telling them not to print this or that story which otherwise would have been forgotten about and greasy chip paper within a couple of days.”

“Yes, and telling someone not to think something is so going to work,” said BusyBody. “I think they call it the Streisand effect, where it does exactly the opposite of what was intended. Anyway, it’s all so pointless these days when any old lie can be around the world before the truth’s even thought of reaching for an enforcement order, never mind it’s trousers.”

“You know, it might be exhilarating with everyone doing the ‘I am Spartacus’ type of routine with these injunctions, but there does seem to be something terribly undemocratic about the whole thing,” said OldRuin. “It’s as if the rule of law means nothing if a group of people on The Twitter shout loud enough.”

“With all that’s going on,” said BusyBody, “I’ve heard that some PRs are already telling their clients to make up allegations and then take out injunctions just to help publicise their latest movie or TV programme.”

“It’s like privacy-injunctions are the new sleb fashion accessory,” said TheBusker. “Quite the must-have item.”

“Or privacy lawyers, at least,” said UpTights. “Though they’re a little more expensive than a pair of Jimmy Choos.”

“Except you can’t get Jimmy Choos on a no-win no-fee basis,” said TheBusker.
“More’s the pity,” came the reply.

BabyBarista is a fictional account of a junior barrister practising at the English Bar, written by barrister and writer Tim Kevan. For more information and to read posts from the last few years visit Cartoons by Alex Williams, author of 101 Ways to Leave the Law.

May 17, 2011 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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