Leveson, Press Freedom and the Watchdogs

Renewal, Vol. 21, No. 1, 2013

Oxford Legal Studies Research Paper 15/2013

10 Pages Posted: 5 Mar 2013 Last revised: 12 Mar 2013

See all articles by Jacob H. Rowbottom

Jacob H. Rowbottom

University of Oxford - Faculty of Law

Date Written: March 5, 2013

Abstract

This article focuses on the arguments against statutory underpinning that have been made following the publication of the Leveson report in the UK. In particular, it examines the way that the watchdog function of the press has been asserted to construct a prophylactic rule against any statutory input. The article warns that such an argument is misguided, and could in practice undermine the independence of the press from private sources of power. The article also argues that the independence of the press does not just require protection from direct legal interventions, but demands greater caution and transparency in the informal relations between senior media figures and politicians.

Keywords: press freedom, Leveson, separation of powers, watchdog

Suggested Citation

Rowbottom, Jacob H., Leveson, Press Freedom and the Watchdogs (March 5, 2013). Renewal, Vol. 21, No. 1, 2013; Oxford Legal Studies Research Paper 15/2013. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2228712

Jacob H. Rowbottom (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Faculty of Law ( email )

St. Cross Building
St. Cross Road
Oxford, OX1 3UJ
United Kingdom

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