Anti-SLAPP Conference

RESOURCES

There are a number of resources to find out more information about SLAPPs, initiatives to counter them as well as practical support.

PRACTICAL AND LEGAL SUPPORT

PRACTICAL SUPPORT:
  • Am I Facing a SLAPPs case? Index on Censorship has developed this tool to help journalists to understand whether the legal threat or action they are facing might be classified as a Slapp. This assessment is intended as a helpful tool and not as legal advice. 
LEGAL SUPPORT:
  • The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) proffers and coordinates legal support on matters related to free speech for individuals and organisations working in countries located geographically in Europe. 
  • The Rory Peck Trust has a legal fund providing grants to help professional freelance journalists cover the costs and fees related to legal action taken against them because of their reporting.
  • The Coalition against SLAPPs in Europe (CASE) provides a map based directory of law firms providing pro-bono legal support across Europe.
REPORTING A CASE:
  • If you think you are being subject to a SLAPP, you can report it to CASE. 
  • If your case specifically pertains to the UK, you can get in touch with the UK anti-SLAPP coalition (through its co-chair Jessica Ní Mhainín at Index on Censorship – jessica@indexoncensorship.org)

INITIATIVES TO ADDRESS SLAPP

  • The UK anti-SLAPP coalition has a policy paper  ‘On Countering Legal Intimidation and SLAPPs in the UK’. The UK anti-SLAPP coalition is an informal working group established in January 2021, co-chaired by the Foreign Policy Centre, Index on Censorship and English PEN. It comprises a number of freedom of expression, whistleblowing, anti-corruption and transparency organisations, as well as media lawyers, researchers and academics who are researching, monitoring and highlighting cases of legal intimidation and SLAPPs, as well as seeking to develop remedies for mitigation and redress, including a potential UK anti-SLAPP law.
  • CASE’s model EU anti-SLAPP law is meant as a tool to show that EU rules to protect public watchdogs from SLAPPs are within reach and more needed than ever. It has already been endorsed by close to 70 organisations and media representatives from all over Europe.
  • CASE’s statement on the need for a Council of Europe (CoE) anti-SLAPP recommendation calls on the CoE to issue guidance on the measures needed to tackle SLAPPs in Europe. Despite the growing body of evidence of a rise in SLAPPs in Europe – including from the CoE’s safety of journalists platform – as of yet no specific recommendation has been issued by the CoE on the issue.

REPORTS THAT EXAMINE THE ISSUE OF SLAPP

  • The study titled The Use of SLAPPs to Silence Journalists, NGOs and Civil Society (June, 2021 ), commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee analyses legal definitions of Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation (SLAPP) and assesses the compatibility of anti-SLAPP legislation with EU law. It is recommended that an anti-SLAPP Directive should be adopted, and that the Brussels Ia Regulation and Rome II Regulation should be recast to limit the incidence of SLAPPs.
  • Protecting Activists from Abusive Litigation: SLAPPs in the Global South and How to Respond (July, 2020), a report published by The International Center for Not-for-Profit Law presents the first cross-regional survey of SLAPPs in the Global South, along with the first rigorous comparative analysis of anti-SLAPP policy responses undertaken in the Global North and the Global South. Survey shows that SLAPPs pose a serious threat to the exercise of fundamental freedoms in the Global South, particularly for activists, civil society organizations, journalists, and community members who dare to criticize powerful entities.
  • SLAPPs in Europe: How the EU can protect watchdogs from abusive lawsuits (January, 2022), a report published by CASE.