In light of the media controversy surrounding the broadcast of video recordings of the late Princess Diana, David Engel, Head of Reputation & Data Protection Law at Addleshaw Goddard, has discussed what this means in relation to privacy law.

David Engel, Head of Reputation & Data Protection Law at Addleshaw Goddard states: "There cannot be much real doubt that the content of the recordings would be protected by the law of privacy. It is, of course, a slightly unusual situation in that the person involved is no longer with us, but it is not just about the late Princess Diana's privacy. Her family also has privacy rights. The Court might well be willing to prevent Channel 4 from broadcasting the tapes if an application for an injunction was made by Princes William and/or Harry, and/or members of the Spencer family.

It has been suggested in the media that any privacy in the tapes has been lost after 20 years and after they were seen by the police and the Spencer family. That is quite wrong. The Court has always been clear that privacy is not the same as secrecy. The fact that the tapes may have been seen by a handful of people certainly would not mean that the privacy in them has been lost. Nor is there any basis to suggest that privacy somehow evaporates with the passage of time."

David Engel

David Engel

Partner, Dispute Resolution
London, UK

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