Media Law

As the shape of the media world continues to expand, so do the legal challenges and opportunities associated with it. We are here to help.

Simpson Grierson is at the forefront of media law in New Zealand and has acted in many of the leading cases that have shaped it. Our specialist litigators cover the full spectrum, from obtaining urgent Court orders in a crisis to providing strategic advice on the management and protection of reputation and information.

We advise across the whole range of media-related areas, with expertise in defamation, privacy, contempt, suppression orders, publishing standards, protection of sources, editorial independence, censorship, confidentiality, and copyright.

We regularly provide pre and post publication advice to broadcasters, publishers, content providers and hosts in New Zealand and overseas.

We are often called on 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.

Work Highlights

Waikato District Health Board v Radio New Zealand Ltd

We successfully acted for Waikato District Health Board in a landmark proceeding for breach of confidence against Radio New Zealand and others. The orders we obtained prevented the further publication of information stolen and published on the dark web as a result of a cyberattack. The case set an important precedent regarding use of stolen data by media entities and others.

Sellman v Slater

We acted for Katherine Rich and the New Zealand Food and Grocery Council in a high profile defamation proceeding brought by Professor Doug Sellman, Professor Boyd Swinburn and Shane Bradbrook, involving 40 causes of action.

Sky Television 

We acted for Sky in High Court copyright proceedings concerning the use by New Zealand media entities of Sky’s sports footage.

Durie v Gardiner [2017] 3 NZLR 72

We acted in the defence of neutral reportage and qualified privilege and the defence of honest opinion – defamation claims over statements made by a re-poster.

Television New Zealand Limited v Rogers

Leading authority on privacy and open justice as relates to the 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.

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