Recent months have brought a flurry of activity that show restrictive privacy injunctions are alive and kicking. At least seven soccer players, television personalities and other high-profile figures have obtained privacy injunctions since July,
according to court records and people familiar with the situation.
Some tabloid newspapers now are being served with an injunctions per month on average, say people familiar with the situation. The broadsheet Guardian newspaper has received notice of at least eight injunctions so far this year, including at
least two super injunctions, according to one of its lawyers, Gill Phillips. That comes on the heels of 10 injunctions last year, she said.
On Thursday, a judge extended an injunction obtained by an unnamed television star against his ex-wife, who alleges they had a sexual relationship after he remarried. According to a public court order, the TV personality denied the allegation and
claimed that his former spouse had threatened to reveal details of their relationship unless he paid her money.
Thursday's order didn't prohibit the media from reporting its existence, but it barred the press from divulging the celebrity's identity.
Attorney General Dominic Grieve has described as an common sense a suggestion by MPs and peers that privacy injunctions should routinely be served on internet companies, as well as newspapers and broadcasters. Grieve told the Guardian:
That certainly seems to me an interesting suggestion. The interesting question is seems to me is, if this should be done on a more routine basis, then that seems to have some force. It is very wise; it's a suggestion of ordinary common sense
If a breach [of a court order] is brought to their attention then they will take action. But they can't act as a policeman on their network; I don't think that's necessarily helpful. They do need to act responsibly and clearly need to abide by
the laws of the land.
His intervention comes after a cross-party committee of MPs and peers urged the government to force Google to remove material banned by courts if it is not prepared to do so voluntarily.
The report, published last month by the privacy and injunctions committee, also urged Grieve to be more willing to take action against people who breach injunctions online, as happened with Ryan Giggs over his alleged affair with a reality TV