Citation: INFORRM: Markle v Associated Newspapers, an interesting preemptive analysis

INFORRM has an excellent two part post on Meghan Markle’s action for misuse of private information against the Associated Newspapers.

Seminal media law commentator Paul Wragg considers the defence advanced by Associated Newspapers and analyses the merits of its arguments in detail. Part I and Part II cover in-depth the elements of the defence, it’s fairly weak proponents and the general lack of supporting precedent.

The claim has three limbs in objecting in the papes use of excerpts of a pricate letter sent by Ms Markle to her father- misuse of private information, copyright infringement and data protection breaches.

The analysis right strikes the heart of the matter- the defence lacks merit and the arguments in Ms Markle’s favour are persuasive. The legitimate expectation of privacy she accrued in relation to the letter is a weighty consideration, one which Associated Newspapers looks to be struggling to fundamentally address given the couching of its defence.

This is to be expected- the arguments fall heavily in Markle’s favour and have basis in fundamental concepts of privacy enshrined in Article 8. It could be even called a textbook case of misuse of private information.

 

Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle to sue the Associated Newspapers

The Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, is suing Associated Newspapers (parent company of the Mail on Sunday) for misuse of private information, infringement of copyright and breach of the Data Protection Act 2018.

The official statement on the matter can be found on the Duke and Duchess’  website. The action comes after the Mail on Sunday ran an article in February 2019 publishing a personal letter from the Duchess to her father.

The Duchess has turned to specialist reputation management law firm Schillings, which issued the following statement:

“We have initiated legal proceedings against the Mail on Sunday, and its parent company Associated Newspapers, over the intrusive and unlawful publication of a private letter written by the Duchess of Sussex, which is part of a campaign by this media group to publish false and deliberately derogatory stories about her, as well as her husband. Given the refusal of Associated Newspapers to resolve this issue satisfactorily, we have issued proceedings to redress this breach of privacy, infringement of copyright and the aforementioned media agenda”.

The case is being privately funded with any proceeds being donated to an anti-bullying charity.