SLS Media & Communications Section: Call for Papers 2014

Media law and ethics

The Society of Legal Scholars has opened its call for papers for the Media & Communications section of the 2014 SLS Annual Conference, to be held at the University of Nottingham from 9th – 12th September.

Full details can be found here on section convener Daithí Mac Síthigh’s blog.

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Inaccurate, untested and uncorrected: another weak and inadequate PCC adjudication

Inforrm's Blog

pcc The Press Complaints Commission (“PCC”) rarely makes adjudications on complaints. Only seven have been published in 2014.  Bearing in mind the fact that the PCC staff and procedures seem likely to be transferred wholesale to the successor body, IPSO, it is worth scrutinising adjudications with some care. 

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Are corporations people?

Excellent post considering that corporations in Ireland can use Defamation Law since the 2009 Act.

Edinburgh Eye

Corporations Are Not People The legal definition of a corporation in the UK is:
a body of persons authorised by law to act as one person, and having rights and liabilities distinct from the individuals who are forming the corporation.

A corporation can own property, do business, pays taxes – well, sometimes – be sued, sue individuals and other corporations, and though it can’t be born or die, a corporation usually has a definite beginning and can come to a definite end. A corporation doesn’t have a passport: it may be registered in just one country, but it can exist in many.

But no matter how many legal rights and powers a corporation may acquire, there are things it cannot do: it cannot vote in most democratic electionsthough the richer the corporation is, the more it is likely to get its way regardless of democracy; it cannot have sex or experience…

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Arthur’s Day: Stop Blaming Diageo for our own National Problems!

We live in a country, as the joke goes, where saying that someone is a bit fond of the drink is short hand for their chronic alcoholism. Yes, Ireland as a country has one of the highest rates of alcohol consumption in Europe. We accept this. However, blaming a sponsored night of drinking and music for all that ails our society, is a slightly immature take on the issue.


Surely, if this was the case, we should also blame the Government for Christmas, St. Patricks Day, Bank Holiday weekends and Halloween. Heaven forbid that Met Éireann should forecast a sunny afternoon and we all head to the Beer Gardens. We should also blame colleges and the USI for Fresher’s Week, Rag Week, end of exams and results night. Following that logic, we should also blame the Department of Education for Leaving Certificate results night, Junior Certificate Results night and End of Exams nights. 


The problem is not the event but society’s acceptance of drinking to excess on a a regular basis being acceptable. For example, if I decide not to drink alcohol on a night, there are more questions about myself than is normal. Am I not feeling well, is there something going on etc. So it is more accepted in society to drink rather than have a soft drink night. Many people I know choose not to drink. The general chatter about these people is trying to figure out why they don’t drink. It’s none of their business. 


Yes, there will be an influx of persons who should know better to A&E and the morning after will be littered with many empty desks in workplaces due to a sudden onset of “colds” and “food poisoning”. However, Diageo is not making us drink: it’s ourselves. Let’s collective grow up on this issue and start looking at ourselves and the culture that we perpetuate when it comes to the consumption of alcohol in this country. 



The First Cake Post – Pear and Pistachio Cake

As this blog is entitled ‘Politics, Law and Possibly Cake’, it’s time that I treated you all to some cake. This cake is Pear and Pistachio cake. It’s originally from p. 100 Issue 37 ‘Jamie’, Jamie Oliver’s cooking  magazine but it’s been gluten free’d and slightly edited by my fair hands. This cake looks complex but it’s quick and simple. Be warned though with the amount of pots and mixing going on, you will have a lot of washing up to do!

Equipment required – 20 cm cake tin, greased and lined with baking paper

  •   1 small saucepan for heating up parts of the mix
  •   An oven which has been preheated to 180c (My oven is a law unto   itself so you may need to keep an eye on yours)
  •   Stand mixer or hand mixer – which ever is to hand. I use my trusty stand mixer

Cake Ingredients

  • 200g unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 200g golden caster sugar
  • 3 beaten eggs
  • 200g of gluten free self raising flour – I always go for Dove’s Farm as you can kid the non-coeliacs into thinking it’s *real* flour. It’s that good
  • 100g ground almonds and a splash of almond essence
  • 120ml buttermilk.
  • Pear Layer:
  • 1 pear
  • Knob of unsalted butter
  • Three tablespoons of golden caster sugar


  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons of honey
  • 50g bashed up/chopped pistachios

First get the cake ingredients in order. Cream the butter and the sugar, then add the beaten eggs. Give them a chance to combine in the stand mixer. When they have been mixed, add in the flour and almonds with the almond essence. Again leave them mix together. Finally add your buttermilk and give the whole mixture a good whizz around. While the mixture is being battered around a bowl by your mixer, head over to peel and thinly slice your pears. Melt the butter and the sugar together gently until they form a syrup. Pour this syrup into your lined cake tin and layer your pears over the base of the tin. Once they have settled in, put your cake mixture in on top. Try to use a deep cake tin, as it’s a large mix but does’t rise too much. Pop the cake in the oven. I had to turn my oven down to 150c once it went in. Leave it for about 40 mins and bring down to 100c for the final 10 mins. Though again, my oven is bonkers so keep an eye the cake through the whole baking process. Once it has fully cooked (insert thin knife etc and ensure that it comes out clean), leave the cake to settle in its tin before turning it out. The top of the cake is actually the bottom so you’ll need to flip it over. When it has cooled get the topping ingredients together. Heat the lemon and honey together until it forms a syrup and drizzle over the cake. If you are lucky to get pre-chopped pistachios the following advice doesn’t count. If you have shelled pistachios then get ready for some stress relief.  Deshell them and then wrap them in a tea towel. Then get a steak hammer and beat the living daylights out of the nuts. Like I said great for stress relief! When you have dealt with your stress/beaten up your pistachios, sprinkle them on top and your done!