MPs will begin removing the “sword of Damocles” hanging over newspapers as the Media Bill is debated in Parliament for the first time today.
In a huge victory for Press freedom, a controversial law that could compel publishers to pay all legal costs if they win or lose a court case is to be dumped from the statute books.
Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer will tell MPs the Crime and Courts Act 2013 has “hung over our media like a sword of Damocles — but “this Bill removes it for good.”
The Media Bill also seeks to modernise UK broadcasting and introduces new regulations for on-demand video services to protect children.
Ms Frazer will say: “The rise of streaming giants and on-demand content, YouTube and smartphones, tablets and TikTok have combined to reshape our whole broadcasting landscape.
“It is our job to enact reforms that keep our broadcasters at the top of their game in the years ahead.
She will add: “This Bill has media freedom at its core.
“Section 40, and the possibility of publishers having to pay the legal costs of the people who sue them, even if they win, has hung over our media like a Sword of Damocles.
“This Bill removes the sword for good.”