Analyse and discuss (media law and Ethics ) scenario

Privacy, Defamation and Copyright Legal Liability


It is important for security professional, to clearly understand the scope of legal and ethical responsibilities in this area. This is in terms of understanding the liability for privacy and security risks (Breit, 2011). Minimizing the liability and risks from physical and electronic threats, legal action, and remain informed on the laws and regulations are crucial. It can be achieved whenever all involved parties increase focus on legal and ethical obligations and maintain a well-organized use of information technology and information security (Crook, 2009). Ethics in tries to define what is good or wrong. In the media industry issues relate to ethics are expect to be applied more to avoid confliction with the set laws and regulations .From an ethics point of view, laws are guidelines that prohibit or mandates. There certain behaviors that are borrowed from ethics and which are used to define the socially acceptable behaviors. The major diversity among ethics and law is that law has more authority in terms of governing compared to ethics (Breit, 2011). On the other hand, ethics is more about cultural mores such as moral attitudes, and customs relating to a certain group. This paper aims to analyze issues related to media law and ethics scenario with an increased focus on the regulations and legal liability to privacy, copyright and defamation.

Legal liability on privacy

Liability refers to the legal obligation held by an entity and extends past the criminal law. These comprise of the legal obligations to compensate for the wrongs committed. This form of legal liability is applicable in the case of privacy. A person privacy especially when it comes to dealing with media issues is important because some issue that media can expose about a person can be very serious and not all parties are able to deal with such issues easily. Privacy alludes to the individuals and groups claim to decide themselves, the manner and extends information relating to them is communicated to others (Cohen-Almagor, 2007). For instance, in a scenario where a report and editor talks about privacy, they usually refer to the case of their rights in printing facts which to them they consider not to be private. Some of the most stylish issues are connected to public officials although within the newsroom they do happen in connection with the private individuals who find themselves the capabilities subject of public attention.

The privacy law aims to strike a balance among two ends where one end comprises of a responsible journalist who has to inform the public and in another end, there is the public where individuals have a right to live are private. The law protects individuals’ privacy such that people are able to enjoy their private life (Areheart, 2007). This is because of a journalist while searching for information to uncover facts they might exceed bounds. Some of these scenarios include; the appropriating of a person name to promote a product or business devoid of the individual consent. The other case is the publicity that places private issues of a person in a false light within the public eye which results in the course of action for invasion of privacy somewhat equivalent to libel. In another scenario, the privacy of a person can be invaded incase offenses like that of appropriation are committed (Breit, 2011). The offense is the use of someone’s image without his or her consent, For instance using a person’s picture without the individual’s consent. Another common case is on conspiracy; this takes place when someone accepts to perform an illegal act. In the media setting, it is ethically wrong too and legally wrong to take a person’s private life photographs without the consent of that person translating to an invasion of his or here privacy through conspiracy.

There are many ethical and legal arguments that that pivot on an appeal to the right to privacy. The case where an individual, government or corporation privacy has been invaded is taken as a serious matter (Crook, 2009). There are substantial philosophical controversies that exist in line with the nature of privacy. However, the issue regarding the privacy has not been receiving explicit mention. The courts have ceased from building up a strand of security law that ensures absurd or even hostile interruption into somebody’s isolation (Gajda, 2009). The intrusion to a person’s private life in the excuse of popular curiosity is not justified and ethical because privacy is an ultimate Association of people’s most profound values and empathetic on the meaning of autonomous moral agent who is capable of self-reflection and choice. Therefore, violating it is demeaning to an individual and an affront to personal dignity (Gajda, 2009.). According to Jean Cohen, a constitutionally protected right to personal privacy is essential to any modern outset of freedom. Similarly, Avishai Margalit feels that the institutions of an attired society should not intrude upon personal privacy. Therefore, as a matter of law, the judgments passed by courts regarding privacy as far as media law is concerned might be the right one, but the TV crew behavior ca be ethically flawed.


The term defamation alludes to the statements made falsely regarding someone that causes damage to their reputation. A statement is defamatory once it is distributed to an outsider and the individual distributed the announcement must know or have known that the statement is or was false (Levitsky, 1979). Cases where wrong information about a person has been broadcasted and published have not been one or two.There is a lot of complexity in this law and has been determined by various courts decisions instead of just one national statute. However, this claim is subject to an assortment of defenses such defense to show that the published statement was true. There is a novel context from internet providers, and a defaming statement can be made, but there is the little novel law relating to this form of defamation (Levitsky, 1979). For instance, one should be careful in calling someone, corrupt, dishonest, and criminal among others because defamation is all about what an ordinary reader sees or hears. This is exactly what the court look into an article and proving the lethal truth of the statement might not always help.

Addressing the defamation scenario from an ethical point of view it’s a complete accord among the legal doctrine and the first-hand moral ethics. It is notable that there is a difference between the ethics methods and jurisprudence. Ethics is perpetually subjective, but the law is mainly objective. Ethics digs deep into the inner life of a person whereby in the case of defamation it seeks to perfect the behavior motives by striving to make individuals pure in heart. It is notable that the law is primarily concerned with the actual manifestation of conduct (Zion, & Craig, 2015). The impact of liability to defamation in all cases lends to a certain emphasis to that excellent admonition of scriptural morality-judge not least yet to be judged. In each event, ethics places upon one of the responsibilities of judging correctly which a bad moral principle is not entirely. The ethical significance in the case of defamation is law’s attitude towards the long-established exercise of rumors.

To report what someone else has said, for what it is worth, is often justified by the most circumspect gossipers, as a perfectly ethical pastime. Critical moralist condemns it as the law does although the law is not free from culpability on individuals who reports the defamatory language of another. Invariably, it has ben held that every repetition of a slanderous statement amounts to a new publication. Therefore, through the repetition, one makes the defamatory matter his or her won (Zion, & Craig, 2015). In this rule, it should be remembered that in each case the law is redressing damage to reputation. Reporting or continued publication of repetitive damaging language affects the reputation even much even more compared to the original publication. In this regard, the rule is well stated to make sure that inventiveness in the manufacture of the defamatory report is no more responsible than persistence in repeating it. Therefore, there is no doubt that the law is accord with the highest ethical principles and its progress has been prejudiced by virtuously moral considerations.


Copyright is referred to an intellectual right to a protected by the law. Copyright is in existence in all kinds of work such as periodicals, books information compilations among others. Any individual can be found guilty of copyright infringement can be liable to criminal and civil sanctions based on the nature of the offending acts. Liabilities based on civil aspects comprise of court orders to pay the owner of the copyrighted material compensation to inform of monetary damages (Moor, 1990). Any profits made fro the infringements can be returned under the order of the court. In addition to the copyright law, there are significant legal tools put in place to protect computer software security breach. This kind of breach could handle data misappropriation or similar materials

The legal liability and regulations relating to copyright can be analyzed from an ethical standpoint. In this case, moral rights refer to the rights that individual makers have in like manner to copyright works. These ethical rights are unmistakable from the ‘financial privileges’ of the copyright proprietor. The maker of work, who holds moral rights, is not as a matter of course the proprietor of copyright in the work. Filmmakers and artists works under the protection of the moral rights unlike another kind of jurisdiction there is no need for assessment of these rights. This is because they become effective consequently upon the making of work (Dickens, and Cook, 2000). Ethically, one does not have to copy something because it is available and easy to acquire it legal or right. For instance, downloading or copying software music and not paying or not following the right procedure. The implication is that failing to observe the copyright laws is unethical despite the approach.

Many scholars in the media law and ethnic think more on the moral permissibility to photocopy anything, but they cannot help it other than being struck by how much of their daily chores include copying in the common sense of the word (Pearson, 2007). Mental activities seem to be a form of copying without putting the copying technology into consideration. The subject of copyright ethics can not be separated from thinking about copyright in regard to the history of social practices that was its original constituent (Dickens, and Cook, 2000). This implies that it is not easy to understand the competing claims of private property owners and society without considering the existing tension between these competing benefits in historical detail. It is not enough to only attend to copying features, but ethical intuitions do not own such precision. Therefore, the case of copyright ethics needs to look at current and emerging technology and try to understand how intuitions can reward personal achievement and allow public access in a satisfactory way.

Reference list

Areheart, B.A., 2007. Regulating Cyberbullies Through Notice-Based Liability.Yale law journal pocket part117, p.41.

Breit, Rhonda (2011) Professional Communication: Legal and Ethical Issues
Zion, L & Craig, D (2015) Ethics for Digital Journalists: Emerging Best Practices.

Cohen-Almagor, R.A.P.H.A.E.L., 2007. 12. Conceptualizing the Right to Privacy: Ethical and Legal Considerations. The Toronto School of Communication Theory: Interpretations, Extensions, Applications, p.305.

Crook, T., 2009. Comparative media law and ethics. Routledge.

Dickens, B.M. and Cook, R.J., 2000. Law and ethics in conflict over confidentiality?. International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics70(3), pp.385-391.

Gajda, A., 2009. Judging Journalism: The Turn Toward Privacy and Judicial Regulation of the Press. California Law Review97(4), pp.1039-1105.

Levitsky, S.L., 1979. Copyright, defamation, and privacy in Soviet civil law: de lege lata ac ferenda (Vol. 22). BRILL.

Moor, J.H., 1990. The ethics of privacy protection. Library Trends39(1-2), pp.69-82.

Pearson, M., 2007. The journalist’s guide to media law. Dealing with legal and ethical issues.