Late last week the Sydney Morning Herald reported that the Attorneys-General from each of Australia’s states have met to discuss ways to gag social media comments that could directly affect the outcome of matters before the courts.
The attorneys, meeting in Brisbane today on the day Ms Meagher’s funeral was held in Melbourne, set up a group to create national guidelines on social media.
Headed by Victorian Attorney-General Robert Clark, the group will be made up of mainstream and social media representatives, judicial officers and police.
It will make recommendations on how to regulate the spread of prejudicial material on social media, warnings for users that police or courts could issue on Facebook and Twitter, and protocols for social media companies.
It will also propose directions that courts can give to juries on social media, examine laws detailing juror offences and assess what research is needed to determine how social media affected jurors’ decisions.