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Media Law

We have always been at the forefront of modern media law in New Zealand. Our specialist media litigators have acted in many leading media cases in New Zealand and have shaped the law in this area. Our cases regularly appear in the New Zealand Law Reports due to their significance.

We advise across a number of related areas including defamation, privacy, contempt, suppression orders, journalism standards, protection of sources, editorial independence, censorship, confidentiality, and copyright.

We regularly provide prepublication and broadcasting advice to broadcasters and publishers in New Zealand and overseas, including Television New Zealand and many independent producers.

Our industry experience means we are often called on by other specialist teams within the firm to advise high-profile individual and corporate clients on the protection of their reputations and the management of their brands when defusing controversial issues. Public relations consultants and media advisers also rely on our industry knowledge to assist their clients.

We provide fresh and innovative advice that deals not only with solutions to current risks, but also helps our clients prepare and adapt to the ever-changing market.

Examples of our work

  • Durie v Gardiner [2017] 3 NZLR 72 - defence of neutral reportage and qualified privilege and the defence of honest opinion – defamation claims over statements made by a re-poster
  • SKY Television - High Court litigation and successful resolution with New Zealand media entities relating to their use of SKY’s sports footage - fair dealing exception in the Copyright Act
  • Television New Zealand Limited v Rogers - scope of the tort of invasion of privacy, and media access to court files
  • Andrews v Television New Zealand Limited - invasion of privacy as relates to filming and screening on television of road accident victim, and defence of legitimate public concern
  • Osmose New Zealand v Wakeling - defence of qualified privilege and defamation proceedings and Media's role as a joint tortfeasor
  • Mafart v Television New Zealand Limited - search of court records relating to the Rainbow Warrior trial, and search of court records
  • Television New Zealand Limited v Haines - principles procedure as relates to the defences of truth and honest opinion in defamation proceedings
  • Berryman v Solicitor General - application for injunction to prevent media publishing documents obtained by a third party, breach of duty of confidence, report on internet, contempt of court
  • Hosking v Runting - leading authority on tort of invasion of privacy and the nature and extent of such tort in New Zealand
  • Re Victim X - leading authority on freedom of expression and the open justice system as relates to suppression of victims' names
  • Television New Zealand Limited v Ah Koy - whether defamation damages mitigated by reference to other publications at APT to diminish plaintiff's reputation in same respects, principle of isolation of damages
  • Television New Zealand Limited v Quinn - law and practice in New Zealand as relates to assessment of damages
  • Television New Zealand v Attorney-General - principles relating to issue and execution of search warrants on media organisations
  • European Pacific Banking Corporation v Television New Zealand Limited - public interest defence of iniquity in breach of confidence claim; protection of sources and whether non-disclosure in public interest