Are you about to commit a criminal offence using that camera, notebook, voice recorder or keyboard?

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The Media & the Terrorism Act
The Media & the Public Order Acts


Did you know that as a journalist, editor or webmaster, you risk committing criminal offences (punishable by imprisonment) under the terms of the Terrorism Act 2006?

You do so if you possess or publish, or attempt to acquire, any written or spoken material that either 'glorifies' terrorism, or causes others (directly or indirectly) to espouse terrorism, participate in or promote terrorism for political or economic purposes.

And as a journalist, editor or webmaster, you also commit criminal offences under the Terrorism Act 2006 if you publish or broadcast any material that assists viewers, listeners or readers to acquire such material, or if the court understands that your journalistic work has the potential to so assist.

These restrictions - which impact on journalists' abilities to research and explain current domestic and world events - apply to any material published on the internet, in books, magazines, newspapers, leaflets, posters, pamphlets or broadcasts.

Journalists and photographers also risk committing criminal offences under separate public order legislation if they fail to comply with police instructions prior to or during an incident.

This is an area of concern with the arrival of uniformed Town Hall wardens (see above) in several UK cities, who are acquiring police-style training and powers to challenge people filming or taking photographs in the street, and to break up groups of people gathering in public places.

Media professionals risk arrest if the police decide that their presence or participation (either directly or indirectly) in any lawful or illegal gathering is liable to either contribute to, provoke, or interfere with their handling of, a public order incident.

But police officers, PCSOs and council wardens are not entitled to seize and erase audio or video footage of news events, and journalists have legal rights to pursue claims for damages if any such material is destroyed without a court order.

Half-day workshops provide broadcast, print, online, trade and academic media with key guidance on complying with the legislation whilst carrying out effective newsgathering activities.

Delivered at corporate and campus venues.


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