Public interest, Torstar and the Lange Cases
I want to discuss the very recent decision of the Supreme Court of Canada in the Torstar case. The New Zealand leading case in this area, the Lange case, was significantly influenced by the Canadian Charter and by the contemporaneous development of human rights jurisprudence in a number of jurisdictions. Now it seems the New Zealand jurisprudence has played a significant part in this recent development of Canadian defamation law. This important decision has opened up the law of defamation for media in Canada. It also demonstrates nicely how common law systems of law are part of a robust process of fertilisation and cross-fertilisation of ideas, analysis and experience. The Supreme Court used a comparative analysis to reach its decision, by looking at developments elsewhere, including New Zealand. And in turn, this decision could influence where our law goes in the future.