Forum on Blogging & Defamation Laws

I had only one day to prepare for this talk. With the patent examination and conference, time was not on my side. I only managed to work on the slide in the bus back to KL and few hours before the talk.

Just when I thought I had everything in order, I discovered that I forgot to bring my name cards while on my way to the Bar Council. Fortunately, a colleague took the trouble to pass me my name cards.
The speakers for the Forum were Member of Parliament YB Jeff Ooi, lawyer Nizam Bashir and myself. Richard Wee started off with an introduction on defamation law and the current situation in Malaysia.

Thereafter, Nizam gave a presentation on the laws applicable on blogs e.g. defamation law, sedition and Communications and Multimedia Act. I on the other hand spoke about the liability of a blogger for defamation, a guide to handle defamation action and also a guide on how to reduce the risk of being threatened with a defamation suit. Jeff closed the panel’s speeches by talking about his blog and the steps he had taken to minimalize the risk of commentors posting defamatory comments.

The floor was opened after that. We had a good number of people coming to the mike to ask us questions. It was an extremely good crowd. It wasn’t the typical quiet Malaysian crowd. It was a very responsive crowd. We had bloggers, students, lawyers, journalist and even random members of the public asking us questions.

Julian Hopkins was one of the persons who stood up to ask questions
Some people speculated that the Special Branch will be there to check on the things that we will say. They suspected one chap who is a member of the Special Branch sitting among the crowd. But they soon realised that he’s actually a Bar Council employee.

After the forum ended, journalist rushed to Jeff Ooi to interview him. I took the opportunity to take some pictures!

Since I was young, public speaking has never been my liking. On many occasions, I shy away from speaking in public. Giving a talk to a room of 80 to 100 people was a giant leap for me.

I must say that anyone who has the same problem with me should try to overcome this problem especially when you are a young lawyer and you wish to market yourself.

I’ve been given an opportunity to write in The Star. I guess I will be writing about this topic in detail.

Related Links:
KL Bar Blog – Forum on Blogging and Defamation Laws
The Potted Plot – Of Blogs and defamation
julianhopkins.net – Blogging and Defamation – Part II
LawEddie.com – Blogging & Defamation Laws Forum

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