The End Result Of Superinjunctions: The Count The 'Can't Be Nameds' Game

from the drink! dept

Following on the Giggs Effect, it appears there have been some interesting developments. First, the BBC now feels comfortable naming Ryan Giggs after MP John Hemming used Parliamentary privilege to name Giggs while discussing this whole mess:
"Mr Speaker, with about 75,000 people having named Ryan Giggs it is obviously impracticable to imprison them all."
Gotta love the understatement of the word "impracticable."

Meanwhile, a different footballer (not Giggs apparently) who has a similar injunction is causing some additional interest after asking the Attorney General (who I'm sure has better things to do) to go after a famous unnamed journalist for a famous unnamed publication who posted an unlinked-to Tweet that mentions the unnamed footballer during an unnamed match. Seriously. Read the story and count what can't be named. Just don't take a drink each time, because you might not make it to the end:
The England footballer, known only by his court codename of TSE, instructed lawyers to ask the judge to pass the case on to the Attorney Generalís office. And he agreed.

Due to the extraordinary restrictions surrounding the reporting of cases such as this, The Mail on Sunday cannot identify the journalist involved nor even provide readers with edited versions of his tweets.

It is believed that the messages were written about the player during a recent high-profile football match, which again The Mail on Sunday cannot identify due to court restrictions.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  • identicon
    Vic, May 23rd, 2011 @ 3:27pm

    I believe they have slipped in that citation by Mail on Sunday, though.

    1. They did reveal that the game played was FOOTBALL!
    2. They also revealed that the case would be forwarded to the ATTORNEY GENERAL!

    Ahhh! Idiots, What are they thinking? Do they want to get sued?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 23rd, 2011 @ 3:40pm

    And the names have already been leaked on Twitter. The footballer's widely believed to be Gareth Barry and the journalist is almost certainly Giles Coren (though according to his Twitter, he didn't know himself.)

    The irony is that unlike Giggs, Barry is not a footballer many people had heard of - well, they have now - and Giles Coren is hardly a household name.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), May 23rd, 2011 @ 4:21pm


    Is there any sort of rhyme or reason with the initials? Is it supposed to be random, or is there a clerk coming up with things like "That Soccer Eunuch?"

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    A Dan (profile), May 23rd, 2011 @ 4:24pm

    Are you chicken?

    "Just don't take a drink each time, because you might not make it to the end"

    That sounds like a challenge.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jesse (profile), May 23rd, 2011 @ 4:53pm

    An appropriate response:

    Assuming this superinjunction nonsense continues, here's what British media should do. Rather than refer to the subject, just call them, "He who should not be named as of May 3, 2011" (or whatever date they bought their superinjunction).

    Someone else could keep a superinjunction superlist, preferably hosted outside the UK. Even in the UK, one would imagine it be acceptable to report on who actually has a superinjunction (otherwise how would you know who you couldn't write about???)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Difster, May 23rd, 2011 @ 9:26pm

    Is it just me or does the whole thing seem like a reverse version of telephone tag where everyone is repeating the correct message but the originator is denying any knowledge of it?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    mike allen (profile), May 24th, 2011 @ 12:06am

    I a few ago couldn't care less about what this soccer moron did in bed. The moment a judge said i am not allowed to see his name it then became must have information. As soon as I and everyone else in the country were told you cant talk about this it became main topic. If Giggs had not bothered to waist his money he would be in the papers for about a day and forgotten. Now he enshrined himself in history great work.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    FuzzyDuck, May 24th, 2011 @ 12:45am

    The shoking thing

    The most shocking thing is of course that Ryan Giggs was allowed to publicly name and accuse Imogen Thomas, dragging her through the mud, while he was hiding behind the safety of a super injunction that didn't allow Imogen to fight back.

    Either everybody's privacy is respected or nobody's, but it can't be one-sided like that.

    Ryan Giggs has rightfully earned his place in history as one major a*hole taken down by the Internet. It couldn't have happened to a more deserving person.

    Don't fuck with the Internet.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile), May 24th, 2011 @ 2:53am


    Perfectly cromulent.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Robert, May 24th, 2011 @ 4:13am

    The footballer is only the tip of the iceberg. The MP who named him as also cited examples of injunctions that claim to prohibit people from talking to their MPs, under threat of prison, which attacks one of the foundations of democracy. The judge involved, Justice Eady, has also talked the MP being in contempt of court, which is constitutional dynamite.

    The whole affair is likely to end with the judges getting a harsh lesson in the realities of politics and the internet. Challenging the authority of Parliament is suicidal, almost as foolish as trying to control the internet.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Pickle Monger (profile), May 24th, 2011 @ 7:32am

    Other thning that can't be named

    Next up on the list: convicting the the "offenders" of a crime that they cannot be made aware of, and sentencing them to the term that cannot be specified, in a penitentiary that cannot be named...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jay (profile), May 24th, 2011 @ 4:31pm

    This wasnt a superinjunction

    Can someone please try to correct the title on this. The Giggs issue was NOT a superinjunction. It was just a normal injunction preventing disclosure of information about a person pending a full trial.

    Injunctions sometimes serve a useful purpose, especially in defamation or privacy cases. Although they should be used sparingly they do protect the ideals that you are innocent until proven guilty and mud sticks.

    Superinjunctions are normally really, really bad things. They actual prevent the reporting the fact an injunction has even been granted. Normally you can report a "footballer" has an injunction which allows the Giggs effect to work its magic. If this was a superinjunction we'd never even know it existed...

    Please dont confuse the two. We should have the debate on superinjunctions but calling normal ones super makes the debate meaningless!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
Insider Shop - Show Your Support!

Hide this ad »
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Hide this ad »
Techdirt Insider Chat
Hide this ad »
Recent Stories
Advertisement - Amazon Prime Music
Hide this ad »


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.