Swimming with sharks: How to publish online and avoid getting sued or blocked by Kapil Sibal

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by Kian Ganz on Wednesday, March 6, 2013


Session type

Technical level


Publishing stuff online has become a stressful occupation in India, whether you do it for a living for a major newspaper or just for fun on Facebook. Seemingly every fortnight another article, or teenager social network posts gets banned by the heavy-handed application of fairly draconian laws.

Unfortunately you don't have to be writing about IIPM, drawing cartoons about Mamta or talking about Bal to potentially get in trouble.

I propose a very practical crash course on how to publish online safely and as freely as possible for bloggers, journalists and anyone else with an interest in freedom of speech online.


Up to around two hours about the laws governing publication (including the classics such as defamation and libel, as well as the newer fangled IT Act and other crazy new sticks the powerful use to suppress dissent or criticism).

I'd like to share some of my experiences and practical advice on how not to get intimidated by the threat of litigation and how to deal with the risks you'll be facing.

Legal theory and actual law talk will be minimal to reduce the risk of falling asleep, and audience participation and sharing of anecdotes will be strongly encouraged.


Strong opinions and a willingness to share them.

Speaker bio

I have many years of experience working as a lawyer and journalist in Europe and India. For the last four years I have worked in the Indian online publishing space and kept myself closely involved with f developments around freedom of speech laws.

The largest hazard of my current profession is that we publish critical and straight-up news stories and features about lawyers. Suffice it to say, we've faced our fair share of legal threats but have so far successfully defended or managed all, with only mild headaches.


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    [-] Vijay Anand 6 years ago (edited 6 years ago)


    It might be good to have this session, but we have an issue of time constraints. Any chance that we can fit it into 30 mins - 20 mins for the session and follow up questions for 10?

    Also can you include some outline slides of your talk? Thanks in advance.


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    [-] Kian Ganz 6 years ago

    Yeah sure, half an hour is a bit tight but should work.

    Will start planning the outline of the session if you're ok with rough directions, and will see whether slides are necessary or whether it might be better without.

    Do let me know if there's anything you think we should cover in particular?

    Cheers Kian

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    [-] Hevin Jose 5 years ago

    Zia Mody is a cardinal legal consultant and also an important member of Bahai Faith in India. She is refer as to control over securities law and corporate merger.

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