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Sending an innocent emoji in a text message could land you in court, because the law could see it as a threat or an acceptance of a contract.
30 Nov 2023

How an emoji can land you in court

We often add an emoji to our emails and text messages to bring a bit of levity to otherwise dull communications, but beware – icons such as the thumbs up, smiley face or gun could land you in trouble with the law. Legal impact of using emojis An emoji is an image used in texting […]
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deepfake, AI, artificial intelligence, bullying, misinformation, disinformation, image-based abuse, fake news, privacy, cybersecurity, data protection, child protection, defamation, e-safety, online
24 Nov 2023

AI-generated deepfake images create bullying danger

Concerns with the use of artificial intelligence on the internet are growing, due to its potential to design powerful toxins, control robo-missiles, perpetuate online scams, spread misinformation and lies, and create AI-generated deepfake imagery and porn. Children exploiting deepfake imagery for bullying Australia’s online safety regulator reports AI-generated sexually explicit imagery and deepfake porn are […]
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jury duty, juror, court, lawyer, judge, sheriff, accused, crime, evidence, judgment, trial, criminal trial, conflict of interest, victim
17 Aug 2023

I’ve been called up for jury duty. What happens now?

Before you could be called up for jury duty to decide the guilt or innocence of an accused, the fate of the person before the court was usually decided by a priest in the belief that God would intervene on behalf of the innocent. Court trials before juries existed In the past there was no […]
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speak ill of the dead, defamation, defamatory, defamed, deceased, reputation, legal action, ALRC, Australian Law Reform Commission, injunction, declaratory order, correction, Defamation Act, publication, identifiable, social media, internet, claim
19 Jul 2023

Yes, you can speak ill of the dead

For thousands of years we have been told not to speak “evil” of the dead. Some say it dates back to the 6th century BC philosopher Chilon of Sparta, who warned it would harm the deceased’s enjoyment of the afterlife. Mind you, Chilon also said “obey the law”, and Australian law says you certainly can […]
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AI, artificial intelligence, ChatGPT, regulation, law, hallucination, AI control, AI system, AI regulation, digital, technology, deepfake, National AI Centre
15 Jun 2023

New laws coming to curtail artificial intelligence (AI)

Lawyer’s use of AI program confirms its unreliability A New York lawyer was embarrassed to admit using artificial intelligence (AI) program ChatGPT when preparing his courtroom legal argument, after it was exposed to have cited several court cases that didn’t exist. When the judge and opponent lawyers couldn’t find the cases, the lawyer discovered ChatGPT […]
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ChatGPT, AI, artificial intelligence, chatbot, Microsoft, defamation, generative AI, accuracy, falsehood, OpenAI, whistleblower, defamatory, publishing, publication, claimant, bot
18 May 2023

Inventiveness of ChatGPT poses risk of defamation

The sudden emergence of ChatGPT and artificial intelligence (AI) chatbots as a feature of everyday life has opened up a new frontier in digital communication and content creation. However, the capacity of the technology to create false information raises the threat that those who disseminate such falsehoods can be sued for defamation. What is ChatGPT? […]
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sacked on probation, sacked, probation, dismissed, unfair dismissal, employer, employee, employment, Fair Work Act, ombudsman, wages, entitlements, notice
10 Nov 2022

Can I be sacked on probation?

“Can I be legally sacked on probation? I thought I’d have to be caught stealing from the office, dodging work or really stuffing up an assignment, but no, I was fired for no reason at all. Is that legal?” Is it legal to be sacked on probation? The short answer is yes – you can […]
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facial recognition, technology, privacy, safety, face recognition, facial, police, Clearview, Privacy Act, security
20 Jul 2022

Crackdown on facial recognition on social media

The commercial use of facial recognition technology has caused concern among privacy advocates. What is facial recognition technology? Facial recognition technology breaks down the face into micro measurements, such as the distance between the eyes, the nose to the upper lip, lower lip to point of jaw, ears to eyes and so on – measurements […]
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public shaming, thief, thieves, shoplifter, shoplifting, wall of shame, CCTV, presumption of innocence, offence, police, stealing, mental health, underage, defamation, damages
12 Jul 2022

Public shaming of thieves could lead to civil claims against businesses

Shopkeepers unwilling to confront thieves despite huge cost to business Shoplifting, theft, robbery and vandalism cost Australian businesses up to $9 billion a year, but the National Retail Association says only 20 per cent of thefts are reported to police. That is largely because confronting thieves pocketing goods in your store could lead to confrontation, […]
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dying declaration, hearsay, evidence, hearsay evidence, victim, killer, admissible, court, witness, crime, Golightly
01 Sep 2021

Can a dying declaration be admitted in evidence?

A man is shot and lies dying on the floor in a pool of blood. He’s discovered by another person not involved in the shooting, who realises he’s still alive. The dying man mutters something. The person leans in closer, and with his final breath the man makes a dying declaration, whispering the name of […]
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defamation on Instagram, defame, defamatory, social media, Instagram story, coronavirus, Covid-19, name and shame, defence of truth, employee, Defamation Act, damages
09 Jul 2021

Former employee of cosmetic clinic sued for defamation on Instagram story

The Brisbane District Court has awarded $82,500 in damages to a cosmetic surgery clinic after it took a former employee to court for defamation on Instagram. This judgement breaks new ground in social media defamation awards, as an Instagram story is usually only visible for 24 hours. (See BeautyFULL CMC Pty Ltd & Ors v […]
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right to be forgotten, internet, online, defamation, public record, crime, criminal, EU, privacy, free speech, right to know
06 Apr 2021

Should Australians have the “right to be forgotten” online?

In 2019, Germany’s highest court ruled that a man convicted of murder in 1982 has the “right to be forgotten”, meaning his name can be removed from online search results. The man complained that although he had served 20 years behind bars for killing two people, he was still paying for the crime. He argued […]
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internet trolls, online trolls, eSafety, Online Safety Bill, digital lynch mob, online abuse, cyber abuse, online threat, legislation
25 Mar 2021

Internet trolls face huge penalties under proposed new laws

Internet trolls, bullies, abusers and anyone who threatens another person or posts revenge porn images online could face fines of up to $111,000 under new laws proposed for Australia. The federal government introduced the Online Safety Bill 2021 to parliament in February 2021, heralding the world’s toughest take-down laws for online abuse, including new powers […]
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conspiracy theories, defamation, defamatory, online, social media, Facebook, reputation, damages, Defamation Act
03 Feb 2021

Posting defamatory conspiracy theories online can cost you

The Federal Court has awarded $875,000 in damages against a person who posted “vile” unfounded conspiracy theories online, after the victim initiated a defamation case. National Party MP Anne Webster, who is based in Mildura in northern Victoria, discovered she and her husband, along with the charity they’d founded, were targeted by a woman making […]
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fake reviews, online, damages, defamation, false review, Competition and Consumer Act, consumer law, ACCC, misleading, deceptive
28 Aug 2020

Posting fake reviews online could cost you thousands

Did you know that posting fake reviews online about a business or professional service provider could land you with a massive fine? In fact, a reviewer was recently ordered by a court to pay $530,000 in damages. Fake review defames and damages reputation of plastic surgeon In this particular case, a woman claimed in a […]
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social media defamation, defamation, defamatory, online defamation, Defamation Act, Facebook, Twitter, Google Reviews, Yelp, online review, online comment
13 Aug 2020

Social media defamation: be cautious when posting or re-posting online comments, reviews and links

Publishers forced to check uncertain facts and seek legal advice As an Australian publisher and editor of a community newspaper since pre-internet times, like most other publishers, I have an increasing appreciation of the need for discretion when deciding what is printed. Many of my publisher colleagues have been and some still are proud advocates […]
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defamation, online defamation, Google, search results, Trkulja, underworld, criminal, sue Google, suing Google
07 Aug 2020

Australian man suing Google for defamation over search results linking him to criminals

A Melbourne businessman is suing Google for defamation in a case which could have huge repercussions for anyone who has reason to start proceedings against a company or individual. Google search results place innocent shooting victim among renowned gangsters In 2004, amid a series of underworld killings, Mr Milorad Trkulja was shot in the back […]
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social media posts, social media, defamation, defamatory, Dylan Voller, reader comments, online comments, Defamation Act
17 Jul 2020

Media companies can be held liable for social media posts by others, says NSW Supreme Court

A recent NSW Supreme Court judgement ruled major media outlets can be held responsible for defamatory social media posts made by members of the public on their internet sites. Publishers of articles are also publishers of reader comments The judgement, which was confirmed by the Court of Appeal, found that media companies which post articles […]
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