An interesting decision from Justice Eady, regarding website material. I particularly liked this description by the writer of the piece, David Banks:
Many publications seem to have adopted one of two approaches to moderating online reader contributions: an ultra-cautious, pre-moderation approach, where every post is vetted before it is allowed up on to the website, with obvious drawbacks in terms of staffing and the delay this builds into the forum; or a "see-no-evil" policy, allowing content to be posted unmoderated, and removing it only if a complaint is received. This approach goes contrary to practices in print publication.
And contrary to common sense as well, I'd add, but it's still a bit of a minefield. What this judgment should try to do, with a bit of luck, is to allow a bit more freedom of speech; that's the hope, anyway.
"In the case of a bulletin board thread it is often obvious people are just reacting in the heat of the moment. The remarks are often not intended, or to be taken, as serious."
Does this mean an end to huffy bloggers threatening each other with legal action when they get offended with each other? I bloody hope so.