Guardian Science Writer Wins Libel Appeal

A UK jury has given a decision in favour of the science writer Simon Singh, who accused that chiropractors in the UK meted out “bogus” treatments.

The ruling, which is being hailed as a big victory for freedom of speech and for Singh, has claimed that Singh must have the right to depend upon on the safeguard of “fair comments” in fighting the libel case brought against him by the British Chiropractic Association (BCA).

A panel of three judges, led by the Lord Chief Justice, has ruled that that the disputes pertaining to science shouldn’t be dealt with by courts, and even compared the experience to “an Orwellian ministry of truth”.

The BCA litigated against the writer for authoring an article in Guardian, in which he argued that claims of some of the chiropractors about treating chronic childhood disorders, like asthma and colic, are not backed by proper evidences.

The decision by the jury, which is to override an original high court verdict that favoured the association, has been heralded a thumping victory by the libel campaigners.

The previous high court judgement instigated a campaign, dubbed “Sense About Science”, spearheaded by scientists and celebs, including Stephen Fry, cautioning that scientific discussion would be jolted in case Singh lost the case.

Our Comments

Singh described the ruling as “brilliant”, but somewhere even showed signs of apathy when he said: “It is extraordinary that this action has cost £200,000 to establish the meaning of a few words.”

Related Links

Science writer Simon Singh wins libel appeal after 'Orwellian nightmare'

(Guardian)

Writer's victory over 'Orwellian' libel laws

(Independent)

Science libel verdict is a forceful blow in defence of freedom of speech

(Times Online)

Science writer wins court battle

(Irish Times)

UK science journalist wins libel appeal

(Ars Technica)

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