Higson-Bliss, L (2022) Prosecuting Communication Offences: Interpreting the Harms Model. Criminal Law Review. ISSN 0011-135X

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This article explores the Law Commission’s 2021 paper - Modernising Communications Offences: a final report. The Commission recommends replacing the Malicious Communications Act 1988 and section 127(1) of the Communications Act 2003 with a new offence based on a harms-based model to control unlawful communications. The article contextualises the problems with current communication law, discusses the Harmful Digital Communications Act 2015 in New Zealand (the inspiration behind the Commission’s proposal and final recommendations) and the use of the terms “likely harm”, “likely audience” and “reasonable excuse”. The article concludes by suggesting that the Law Commission’s recommendations for this area of the law are inadequate and do not overcome many of the issues previously highlighted (in the Commission’s own Scoping Report) with the application of communication law in the 21st century, running the real risk of the overcriminalisation of speech.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The final version of this article and all relevant information related to it, including copyrights, can be found on the publisher website.
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare > HV1 Criminology
K Law > K Law (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Law
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 16 Feb 2022 15:36
Last Modified: 09 Mar 2022 14:22
URI: https://eprints.keele.ac.uk/id/eprint/10622

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