Privacy: A Judicial Perspective

  • David Eady


Towards the end of the 20th century, there developed in most of the ‘western’ democracies a concern to protect personal privacy and, if possible, by means of enforceable legal remedies. There were a number of factors underlying this general trend, some driven by technological developments in the handling and dissemination of information, others by more elusive social or moral considerations. There were naturally worries about the need to limit state intrusion into the lives of citizens and to safeguard the information nowadays inevitably generated in the course of conducting those lives in a complex and closely regulated society.


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  1. 25.
    25 See e.g. the discussion in Tugendhat and Christie, The Law of Privacy and the Media, 2nd edn (Oxford: OUP, 2011) at paras 12.76 et seq. and A v B [2005] EMLR 851 at [22]–[23].Google Scholar
  2. 52.
    52 Its demise is discussed in Arlidge, Eady & Smith, Contempt, 4th edn (London: Sweet & Maxwell, 2011) at 5–204 et seq. There was recently a short-lived attempt to revive this doctrine in Northern Ireland after a Westminster politician published some unguarded remarks in a memoir reflecting on a Northern Ireland judge’s integrity. In the end, it was all sorted out. Subsequently, this form of contempt (though effectively extinct in England and Wales for more than a century) was finally abolished by s. 33 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013.Google Scholar

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© International Bar Association 2014

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  • David Eady

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