Ursula  Smartt Author of Evaluating Organization Development
FEATURED AUTHOR

Ursula Smartt

Associate Professor of Law
Northeastern University London

Media law today is amongst the most challenging of all the various areas of legal activity. Most of us rely on the internet to run our lives. Device addiction is considered a serious affliction, particularly amongst the young. Experts have likened the new digital world to the days of the old lawless Wild West. I enjoy lecturing in public constitutional law and sharing my media and entertainment law research with my law students.

Biography

Ursula Smartt is Associate Professor of Law at Northeastern University London. She has published extensively in international refereed journals in media and entertainment law, on topics such as regulating online harm, internet libel, privacy and freedom of expression, superinjunctions and court reporting. In intellectual property law she focuses on the music industry, such as music sampling and online streaming services. Her successful book publications are standard set texts on law and journalism courses across the UK, namely, Media and Entertainment Law and Media Law for Journalists.

Education

    BA Joint Hons English & German, Hull.
    PGCE (Modern Languages & PE), Hull.
    MA German Politics, London
    Postgraduate Diploma in Law, London
    Postgraduate Diploma in Hotel & Catering Management Glasgow.
    MPhil Criminology & Social Policy, Hull.

Areas of Research / Professional Expertise

    Prison Research - prisoner labour; correctional industries. World-wide.
    Media Law - court reporting; contempt of court; privacy; freedom of expression; superinjunctions.
    IP Law - copyright in the music industry.

Personal Interests

    Prison photography
    Hiking European mountains
    Piano
    Tennis

Websites

Books

Featured Title
 Featured Title - Media Law for Journalists - 1st Edition book cover

Articles

40 E.I.P.R. 2018

The three Rs: Remorse, Rehabilitation, Right to be forgotten: how de-listing is left up to the courts in NT1 & NT2 and AR v Chief Constable of Greater Manchester.


Published: Apr 20, 2020 by 40 E.I.P.R. 2018
Authors: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Criminology and Criminal Justice, Law, Media Communication

The three Rs: Remorse, Rehabilitation, Right to be forgotten: how de-listing is left up to the courts in NT1 & NT2 and AR v Chief Constable of Greater Manchester.

European Intellectual Property Review

‘Are Privacy Injunctions Futile in The Digital Age? Why Scottish Papers Choose to Name the Super Injunction A-Listers - and Why they Cannot not Do so Online’


Published: Apr 20, 2020 by European Intellectual Property Review
Authors: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Communication Studies, Law, Media Communication

‘Are Privacy Injunctions Futile in The Digital Age? Why Scottish Papers Choose to Name the Super Injunction A-Listers - and Why they Cannot not Do so Online’

Photos

News

Who's slapping whom - Strategic Lawsuits against public participation. Lecture

By: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Law, Media Communication, Media, Journalism and Communications

YouTube Video: 'Who's slapping whom' - Lecture by Ursula Smartt at Leeds Business School and Leeds Law School. Associate Professor Ursula Smartt discussing strategic lawsuits against public participation – or Slapps. 14 November 2023

Ursula Smartt's booklaunch Media and Entertainment Law 5th ed (2023)

By: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Law, Media Communication, Media, Journalism and Communications

Foreword by Adrienne Page KC, 5 RB Chambers, 5 Gray’s Inn Square, Gray’s Inn, London.

In the past 25 years, so much expansion has taken place in legal activities potentially affecting the media, emerging quite slowly from such trigger legislation as the Human Rights Act 1998, the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 and the Data Protection Act 1998. The contents page of Ursula Smartt’s fifth edition of Media and Entertainment Law shows the sheer scale of the task for an academic author covering the modern-day spectrum of activity in this field of law. Smartt brings to the task learning as well as a dynamic and approachable style. The Defamation Act 2013 has been the most radical event in my many decades as a defamation practitioner.  This attempt by Parliament to rebalance and modernize the tort involved, amongst other reforms, abolishing the main common law defences and replacing them, with some adjustments and re-naming, with statutory defences. Smartt stimulates the reader’s thinking with astute pointers as to whether Parliament struck the balance correctly. It is still early days. For now at least, the practical effect of this uncomfortable variance of judicial approach as between the two torts when reputational harm is in play are somewhat muted because damages for purely reputational injury are not available in misuse of private information. But for how much longer? It was apparent in the course of argument in ZXC that some on the panel had difficulty with the idea that damages for injury to reputation have been ruled unavailable in misuse of private information cases. Their reservations on that subject were signalled in the judgment at [79]. Is the single meaning rule now doomed? In answering that and a myriad other question, you could not get better help than in the pages of Professor Smartt’s interesting and wide-ranging book.

 

 

 

Phillip Taylor MBE review. Media & Entertainment Law 4th edition

By: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Law

BOOK REVIEW MEDIA AND ENTERTAINMENT LAW Fourth Edition By Ursula Smartt ISBN: 978 1 13847 912 8 (hardback) 978 1 13847 913 5 (paperback) 978 1 35106 654 9 (ebook) ROUTLEDGE Taylor & Francis Group www.routledge.com THE DEFINITIVE LEGAL TEXT FOR MEDIA PROFESSIONALS- WITH A FOREWORD BY BARONESS HELENA KENNEDY QC An appreciation by Elizabeth Robson Taylor of Richmond Green Chambers and Phillip Taylor MBE, Head of Chambers, Reviews Editor, “The Barrister” and Mediator For media lawyers, students and the increasingly wide spectrum of media folk, from journalists to web content developers and so forth, the publication of this new fourth edition of ‘Media and Entertainment Law’ by Ursula Smartt will surely be a cause for some celebration. The relentless pace of technological change in the media landscape means that this is a book that’s badly needed and having gone through four editions since 2011, it has become a highly regarded work of reference in this fast developing and often fraught area of law. From print to film, to broadcasting, none of the traditional media have evolved with such dizzying speed as the internet. Vast as it is, it remains the only medium which is almost totally unregulated. More than a few commentators have compared it to the Wild West, a new frontier which is completely lawless. In our review of the 2017 edition of Ursula’s book, we, at Richmond Green Chambers, noted her comments on the internet which still apply, namely that it is ‘ubiquitous, influential, international and almost universally accessible’ and one might add, still as difficult to regulate. There have been numerous attempts at regulation, as detailed in this book, including initiatives by the European Union to regulate hate speech, to cite only one example. The key question is: ‘Can cyberspace be regulated and governed?’ Well — largely due to several geo-political factors, the immediate answer would have to be ‘not yet’. ‘There is yet no universally agreed upon definition of internet governance,’ says the author, ‘especially in areas such as intellectual property, privacy law enforcement, internet free speech and cyber security’. Nonetheless, the carefully researched and informed discussion on this and related matters is what distinguishes this book. Overall, the focus is on two main themes: freedom of expression and the right of the individual to privacy. Either separately or together, each of these issues has become a hot topic of late and therefore intensively scrutinized in this new edition. Also new to this edition — and this is only a shortlist —are sections on ‘the right to be forgotten’…the media’s increasing access to the courts…and regulations pertaining to the press, broadcasting, advertising, film, video and online music distribution services. Also note another topic that’s still smokin’ hot: election and party-political broadcast regulations with the focus on social media and election fraud. Notice too, the 27-page glossary — likely the most useful glossary you’re likely to come across, containing thorough yet concise definitions for all the relevant legal terms, including Latin tags and all those pesky acronyms. Given the ubiquity of the media and its influence in modern life, this book should be required reading certainly for lawyers, researchers and anyone else professionally involved in the media. This paperback edition was published in a fourth edition on 6th November 2019. It is also available as an ebook.

Book Launch of Media and Entertainment Law 4th ed. 2020

By: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Law

On the 4th December 2019 I had the pleasure of launching the 4th edition of my book which by now comprises 700 pages. Baroness Helena Kennedy QC who wrote the foreword to this edition launched the book by giving an enlightening speech. The Head of the Law Faculty, Dimitrios Kyriazis gave the introductory speech, and my students, Marie Therese Gumpert and Tony Kyriakides introduced the speakers. I would like to thank Master A C Grayling for facilitating the event at New College of the Humanities, London, all staff and students who helped with the hosting of the event. My grateful thanks also goes to Baroness Helena Kennedy QC for writing the foreword and taking time out of her busy schedule to launch the book. Thank you to the guests from the world of media, entertainment and law who attended the event which was extremely enjoyable. I hope this video demonstrates this. Elizabeth and Phillip Taylor (MBE), Barristers from Richmond Green Chambers created a fantastic review of the book. I would like to extend my gratitude to them. The link to the video review is here: https://bit.ly/37KsQfD Amazon link to the book: https://amzn.to/3905W45

Book launch of 3rd edition Media and Entertainment Law by Sir Keir Starmer QC

By: Ursula Smartt

Sir Keir Starmer QC MP launched Ursula Smartt's third edition of her book 'Media and Entertainment Law' at New College of the Humanities, Bloomsbury London, in March 2017. He said: 

"The way we communicate has changed profoundly in the last decade.  Old established frameworks which distinguished journalists from others are largely redundant; social media provides a new world-wide platform for everyone; the Leveson Inquiry shone a bright torch on murky practices; and, as the recent EU Referendum campaigns showed, the capacity for whipping up division, hatred and hostility is formidable.  We live in rapidly changing times.  The ability of the law to keep up is a real challenge.

 This book acts as a trusted guide in these uncertain times.  The title ‘Media and Entertainment Law’ does not do justice to the contribution that Ursula Smartt makes.  Of course, on one level, this is a book for students of law.  But it is much more than that; it puts law into its historical, political and social context.  The breadth of coverage is wide, taking in privacy, freedom of expression, technology, regulation, defamation, intellectual property and much more.  The depth of coverage is striking.  For example, before getting to an analysis of Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights, Smartt takes us through not only the historical development of free speech and press freedom, but also the theoretical foundations of media freedom.  Real issues are brought to life by real examples: thus the privacy arguments are illustrated by reference to the way Gwyneth Paltrow announced her ‘conscious uncoupling’ from Chris Martin, and the way Olympic diver, Tom Daley, came out in a YouTube posting in December 2013.

 Nor is Smartt unafraid to reach strong conclusions.  Take this example in chapter 3, which covers technology and the media:  “one thing is clear: online communication is no longer constrained by legal boundaries ....”.  What follows is an analysis of questions, such as, “is trolling a criminal offence?”  As well as the strict legal answer, Smartt gives us context, which leads her to conclude that “there is a clear anomaly in the law and the way in which internet abuse is treated and investigated by the police depending on whether the victim is in the public eye or an ordinary member of the public ....”.  Internet service providers are also subjected to withering analysis.

This book acts as a beacon. It helps readers to understand not only what the law is, but also why the law is what it is.  In a fast-changing world, that is an invaluable contribution."

 

Book review by Barrister Phillip Taylor: Media and Entertainment Law 3rd edition

By: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Law

 

Phillip Taylor has also done a YouTube video review of the 2nd edition of the book (click here):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fi5h5wDuAlU

 

Media and Entertainment Law, 3rd ed, 2017 - foreword by Sir Keir Starmer QC MP

By: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Communications Studies, Law

Media and Entertainment Law (3rd ed.)

 

Foreword

 

The way we communicate has changed profoundly in the last decade.  Old established frameworks which distinguished journalists from others are largely redundant; social media provides a new world-wide platform for everyone; the Leveson Inquiry shone a bright torch on murky practices; and, as the recent EU Referendum campaigns showed, the capacity for whipping up division, hatred and hostility is formidable.  We live in rapidly changing times.  The ability of the law to keep up is a real challenge.

 

This book acts as a trusted guide in these uncertain times.  The title ‘Media and Entertainment Law’ does not do justice to the contribution that Ursula Smartt makes.  Of course, on one level, this is a book for students of law.  But it is much more than that; it puts law into its historical, political and social context.  The breadth of coverage is wide, taking in privacy, freedom of expression, technology, regulation, defamation, intellectual property and much more.  The depth of coverage is striking.  For example, before getting to an analysis of Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights, Smartt takes us through not only the historical development of free speech and press freedom, but also the theoretical foundations of media freedom.  Real issues are brought to life by real examples: thus the privacy arguments are illustrated by reference to the way Gwyneth Paltrow announced her ‘conscious uncoupling’ from Chris Martin, and the way Olympic diver, Tom Daley, came out in a YouTube posting in December 2013.

 

Nor is Smartt unafraid to reach strong conclusions.  Take this example in chapter 3, which covers technology and the media:  “one thing is clear: online communication is no longer constrained by legal boundaries ....”.  What follows is an analysis of questions, such as, “is trolling a criminal offence?”  As well as the strict legal answer, Smartt gives us context, which leads her to conclude that “there is a clear anomaly in the law and the way in which internet abuse is treated and investigated by the police depending on whether the victim is in the public eye or an ordinary member of the public ....”.  Internet service providers are also subjected to withering analysis.

 

This book acts as a beacon. It helps readers to understand not only what the law is, but also why the law is what it is.  In a fast-changing world, that is an invaluable contribution.

 

 

Keir Starmer QC, MP

4 July 2016

Optimize Public Law, 2nd ed Published November 2016

By: Ursula Smartt
Subjects: Law

The second edition of this book coincides with The United Kingdom’s vote to leave the European Union (so-called ‘Brexit’) – a seismic change in public constitutional law. Once Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty is invoked, there will be a period of two years to complete negotiations and exit the EU. Depending on the withdrawal negotiations and changes in the Westminster Parliament, this period may be either shortened or extended. If one thing is clear, it is that the negotiations for the terms of the UK’s exit are likely to impact on your law syllabus.

 While those of you who wished to see the UK remain within the EU are understandably disappointed, Brexit may well provide an unexpected opportunity for the UK to introduce new laws and once outside the EU there could be more opportunity to reach bilateral trade agreements with major, high growth countries which have been unable to agree deals with the EU (e.g. India and China). Human rights law in form of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and the Human Rights Act 1998 are not affected by Brexit.

This edition has been completely revised taking into account a number of the country’s law syllabus changes. Taking into account students’ feedback and those who used the first edition, they found that the book helped them enormously with their exam revision, in their coursework submissions and how to gain high marks. Students who used the first edition of this text reported back that it enhanced their knowledge of Public Law and increased their understanding of the subject areas, particularly with the more difficult and theoretical concepts, such as the Rule of Law, Parliamentary Supremacy (or Sovereignty) and the EU, Devolution and the administration of Judicial Review.

It is important that you understand the meaning and function of Public Law, the constitutional set-up and the interaction of human rights law with UK law. After studying this text students said they understood the role and function of Judicial Review better and the remedies and mechanisms available to UK citizens when challenging the legality and procedural fairness of decisions of public bodies, such as local government, government departments, Ministers and other public bodies. The text also explains non-court based remedies such as complaints procedures via the Ombudsman scheme. The text focuses in detail how the Human Rights Act 1998 has impacted on all areas of Public Law and finishes with police powers and the right to peaceful assembly.

 

 

 

Videos

Barrister Phillip Taylor reviews Media & Entertainment Law 5th ed by Ursula Smar

Published: Apr 13, 2023

Freedom of the press, or the right to privacy? Wherever you (or your clients) stand on this issue, this new law text, now in its fifth edition by well-known author Ursula Smartt, provides in precise detail, a rigorous and highly readable analysis of what has now become a key area of law.

Baroness Helena Kennedy QC launches Media and Entertainment Law 4th ed

Published: Aug 13, 2020

On the 4th December 2019 I had the pleasure of launching the 4th edition of my book which by now comprises 700 pages. Baroness Helena Kennedy QC who wrote the foreword to this edition launched the book by giving an enlightening speech. The Head of the Law Faculty, Dimitrios Kyriazis gave the introductory speech, and my students, Marie Therese Gumpert and Tony Kyriakides introduced the speakers.

Barrister Phillip Taylor reviews Media and Entertainment Law 4th ed

Published: Aug 13, 2020

THE DEFINITIVE LEGAL TEXT FOR MEDIA PROFESSIONALS- WITH A FOREWORD BY BARONESS HELENA KENNEDY QC

Media and Entertainment Law, 2nd ed Book Launch by lawyer Mark Stephens

Published: Dec 07, 2016

Book launch at the Frontline club, London. Introduction by editor Fiona Briden (Routledge) followed by famous media lawyer Mark Stephens. Ursula Smartt (author) then talks about the book: Media and Entertainment Law.