Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Campaign to keep libel laws out of science

Sense About Science has launched the "Keep the Libel Laws out of Science" campaign to defend the right of the public to read the views of journalists and scientists.
It follows the recent libel case where the science writer Simon Singh is being sued by the British Chiropractic Association over an article he wrote in the Guardian.
So far, over 15,000 people have signed the Sense About Science campaign's statement calling for an urgent review of English libel laws, including many high profile figures from science, the media, the arts, entertainment and the law.
Simon Singh says: "It has been a stressful and frustrating twelve months since I published my article on chiropractors and their attempts to treat children with conditions such as asthma. The British Chiropractic Association's decision to sue me for libel has been an enormous drain on my time and energy. However, the support that I have received from family, friends, readers, bloggers, scientists, journalists and those who care about free speech has been incredible, and it has played a crucial role in my decision to continue defending my article and fighting the libel action.
"More importantly, everyone agrees that there is something fundamentally wrong with the English libel laws, which have a chilling effect on journalists, whether they write about science or anything else, whether they live in Britain or anywhere else."
For more about the campaign see the Sense About Science website.

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