Sign the National Petition for Libel Reform
By FROM SIMON SINGH AND SILE LANE - E-MAIL
Added: Wed, 27 Jan 2010 00:00:00 UTC
Thanks to Steve L for the forwarded e-mail.
Can we ask for your help?
You know we joined up with free speech organisations to form the Libel Reform Coalition* in December and that we have been working hard with many of you to highlight the impact of England's libel laws from my own and Peter Wilmshurst's cases to the chilling effect on medical journals and science blogs and other writing. This has begun to focus political and legal minds on the problem but we now have very little time to go before election manifestos are published. We need a commitment in those manifestos. Many of the politicians we've met don't dispute that the libel laws are unfair and against the public interest, but they won't commit to changing them.
There is a new joint petition calling for action at www.libelreform.org, separate to the Keep Libel Laws out of Science petition, and where you can also send a letter urging your MP to support libel law reform.
There were a few teething problems at the launch of this site but progress has been made in fixing these. If you haven't already signed this petition please do it now, and please do sign even if you don't live in the UK. Get your organisation, friends, colleagues and clubs to sign up and email their members; if you haven't written, blogged and Tweeted, could you?
We need your help to get 100,000 signatures before manifestos are published. It will help us to get a strong show of support before members of the coalition meet Jack Straw on Thursday 28th January.
Simon and SÃle
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