George Monbiot on the libel laws.
Perhaps you don\’t live in England or Wales, so you think this has nothing to do with you. You\’re wrong. English libel law now applies to everyone on Earth. Make any accusation, anywhere in the world, and if the subject can demonstrate that a single person in England or Wales has read it, you could be sued here for every penny, cent, rouble, rupee or renminbi you possess. The internet and the global nature of publishing ensure that these medieval laws have become the most powerful extra-territorial legislation ever drafted.
Of course, readers around here would have known this some time ago. Like three years or so.
It gets worse though. Not only is everything ever read in England subject to the English libel laws: everything ever read anywhere is subject to the libel and defamation laws of that jurisdiction. It\’s a mess, one I have no idea how it might be fixed, but someone somewhere needs to do so.