Hyde Park Residence Ltd v Yelland, News Group Newspapers Ltd, News International Ltd, Murrell: CA 10 Feb 2000

The court considered a dispute about ownership and confidence in and copyright of of video tapes taken by Princess Diana before her death.
Held: The courts have an inherent discretion to refuse to enforce of copyright. When assessing whether the copyright should be enforced the relevant issues would be ones arising from the work itself, and not from the ownership. Copyright rights are assignable in law, and therefore the court must apply different tests to those which applied to the breach of confidence. Here photographs had been copied, sold and republished. Even if some degree of use would be fair dealing, excessive use can render the use unfair: ‘ the basis of the defence of public interest in a breach of confidence action cannot be the same as the basis of such defence to an action for infringement of copyright. In an action for breach of confidence the foundation of the action can fall away if that is required in the public interest, but that can never happen in a copyright action. The jurisdiction to refuse to enforce copyright, which I believe has been recognised comes from the court’s inherent jurisdiction. It is limited to cases where enforcement of the copyright would offend against the policy of the law. ‘ . . . a court would be entitled to refuse to enforce copyright if the work is: (i) immoral, scandalous or contrary to family life; (ii) injurious to public life, public health and safety or the administration of justice; (iii) incites or encourages others to act in a way referred to in (ii).’ The attempt to establish a public interest defence failed.
Lord Justice Stuart-Smith, Lord Justice Aldous, And Lord Justice Mance
Times 16-Feb-2000, Gazette 24-Feb-2000, [2000] EWCA Civ 37, [2001] Ch 143, [2000] RPC 604, [2000] ECDR 275, [2000] EMLR 363, [2000] 3 WLR 215
England and Wales
See AlsoHyde Park Residence Ltd v Murrell EAT 9-Jul-1999
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Appeal fromHyde Park Residence Limited v Yelland, News Group Newspapers Limited, News International Limited, Murrell PatC 16-Mar-1999
There is a public interest defence to an allegation of copyright infringement. A newspaper republished video camera stills to demonstrate the untruth of assertions made publicly about the relationship if Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed.
Held: It . .
CitedPro Sieben Media AG v Carlton Television Ltd and Another CA 7-Jan-1999
The defendant was accused of infringing copyright in a TV programme relating to the pregnancy of a woman with eight foetuses. The defendant claimed fair dealing, but that defence was rejected by the trial judge.
Held: The decision was . .
CitedWeld-Blundell v Stephens CA 1919
The exception to the obligation not to disclose confidential information is limited to the proposed or contemplated commission of a crime or a civil wrong. . .
CitedThe Newspaper Licensing Agency Limited v Marks and Spencer Plc PatC 19-Jan-1999
The daily circulation within a large company of press cuttings was outside the scope of the reporting of current events defences to copyright infringement. Ownership of the typographical arrangement of a newspaper article sufficed to found a claim. . .
CitedAnnesley v Earl of Anglesea 1743
‘no private obligations can dispense with that universal one which lies on every member of the society to discover every design which may be formed, contrary to the laws of the society, to destroy the public welfare.’ . .
CitedTime Warner Entertainments LP v Channel Four Television Corporation plc CA 1994
In testing whether a defence to copyright infringement of fair dealing succeeds, the court can take note of the actual purpose of the work, and will look carefully to verify the claimed purpose: ‘it is necessary to have regard to the true purpose of . .
CitedAssociated Newspapers Group plc v News Group Newspapers 1986
The Sun printed copyright letters which had passed between the late Duke and Duchess of Windsor, but the exclusive rights to which had been obtained by another newspaper. As to dicta that use by a competitor is not fair: ‘That seems to be exactly . .
CitedBritish Oxygen Company Limited v Liquid Air Limited 1925
The plaintiff alleged a breach of copyright by the publication of a letter.
Held: The defence of fair dealing was rejected.
Romer J said: ‘But I need not consider this further, and for this reason; the Act no doubt extends to unpublished . .
MentionedHindley v Higgins and News Group Newspapers Ltd CA 24-Aug-1983
The court considered what would amount to fair dealing in copyright . .
CitedBeloff v Pressdram Ltd QBD 1973
A journalist on The Observer sued the publishers of Private Eye for having published a memorandum of the plaintiff about a politician, Mr Maudling, which had been circulated amongst the employees of The Observer.
Held: The defences to a claim . .
CitedInitial Services Ltd v Putterill CA 1967
The plaintiff’s sales manager resigned, but took with him confidential documents which he gave to a newspaper. The defendant sought to justify this, saying that the company had failed to register agreements it should have done under the Act.
CitedLion Laboratories Ltd v Evans CA 1985
Lion Laboratories manufactured and marketed the Lion Intoximeter which was used by the police for measuring blood alcohol levels of motorists. Two ex-employees approached the Press with four documents taken from Lion. The documents indicated that . .
CitedFraser v Evans CA 1969
The law of confidence is based on the moral principles of loyalty and fair dealing. An injunction was sought to restrain an intended publication: ‘The court will not restrain the publication of an article, even though it is defamatory, when the . .
CitedCoco v A N Clark (Engineers) Ltd ChD 1968
Requirememts to prove breach of confidence
A claim was made for breach of confidence in respect of technical information whose value was commercial.
Held: Megarry J set out three elements which will normally be required if, apart from contract, a case of breach of confidence is to . .
CitedWoodward v Hutchins CA 1977
An injunction was sought to restrain publication of confidential information about a well-known pop group, starring Tom Jones and Engelbert Humperdinck. As the group’s press agent, the defendant’s role had been to see that the group received . .
CitedHubbard v Vosper CA 1971
Claims of infringement were made as to copyright works being various works about Scientology. Extracts had appeared in the defendant’s book which was critical of the cult. It was submitted by the plaintiff that the fair dealing section applied only . .
CitedBritish Steel Corporation v Granada Television Ltd HL 7-May-1980
The defendant had broadcast a TV programme using material confidential to the plaintiff, who now sought disclosure of the identity of the presumed thief.
Held: (Lord Salmon dissenting) The courts have never recognised a public interest right . .
CitedExpress Newspapers v News (UK) plc 1990
If summary judgment is given to one party on his claim, it must also be given on a counterclaim made on the same basis by the defendant. The principle that a party to litigation cannot ‘approbate and reprobate’ (or ‘blow hot and cold’) can curtail a . .
CitedAttorney-General v Guardian Newspapers Ltd (No 2) (‘Spycatcher’) HL 13-Oct-1988
Loss of Confidentiality Protection – public domain
A retired secret service employee sought to publish his memoirs from Australia. The British government sought to restrain publication there, and the defendants sought to report those proceedings, which would involve publication of the allegations . .
CitedGlyn v Weston Feature Film Co 1916
Relief for copyright infringement was refused where the nature of the work tended to gross immorality. Younger J said that it was: ‘clear law that copyright cannot exist in a work of a tendency so grossly immoral as this, a work which apart from its . .
CitedHolman v Johnson 5-Jul-1775
ex turpi causa non oritur actio
Mansfield LCJ set out the principle of ex turpi causa non oritur actio: ‘The objection, that a contract is immoral or illegal as between plaintiff and defendant, sounds at all times very ill in the mouth of the defendant. It is not for his sake, . .
CitedFrancome v Mirror Group Newspapers Ltd CA 1984
The defendant had acquired illegal tapes of telephone conversations which it said implicated the plaintiff. He sought to restrain publication of the material pending forthcoming discliplinary charges at the Jockey Club.
Held: The court had to . .

Cited by:
See AlsoHyde Park Residence Ltd v Murrell EAT 9-Jul-1999
. .
Appealed toHyde Park Residence Limited v Yelland, News Group Newspapers Limited, News International Limited, Murrell PatC 16-Mar-1999
There is a public interest defence to an allegation of copyright infringement. A newspaper republished video camera stills to demonstrate the untruth of assertions made publicly about the relationship if Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed.
Held: It . .
CitedFraser-Woodward Ltd v British Broadcasting Corporation Brighter Pictures Ltd ChD 23-Mar-2005
The claimant asserted infringement of copyright by the defendants in photographs of the family of David Beckham. The defendant admitted using the photographs but asserted that no permission was required since the use was a fair dealing.
Held: . .
CitedHRH The Duchess of Sussex v Associated Newspapers Ltd ChD 11-Feb-2021
Defence had no prospect of success – Struck Out
The claimant complained that the defendant newspaper had published contents from a letter she had sent to her father. The court now considered her claims in breach of privacy and copyright, and her request for summary judgment.
Held: Warby J . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 13 February 2021; Ref: scu.147070