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Australian Courts and Social Media

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Australian Courts and Social Media: New Law Review Article

Alysia Blackham

University of Cambridge

George Williams

University of New South Wales

September 27, 2013

Alternative Law Journal, Vol. 38, Issue 3
UNSW Law Research Paper No. 2013-66


Social media, like Facebook and Twitter, are now pervasive in many sectors of Australian society. However, Australia’s courts are generally taking a cautious approach to using this technology to enhance and complement their processes. Where courts have used social media, it has generally been in the context of regulating its use by others (for example, by limiting journalists’ live tweeting of court cases or juries’ use of extraneous social media ‘research’) rather than considering how they might make active use of social media themselves. In this article, we examine the extent to which Australian courts are using social media. We consider the opportunities and challenges posed by such media for courts and assess the extent to which they could make greater use of the technology.

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