JK Rowling loses court battle over son pic

(Digital Spy)
Updated: 2007-08-08 17:02

Harry Potter author JK Rowling has lost a court battle over a photograph of her son.

The best-selling writer was unhappy when a picture of her son David appeared in the Sunday Express magazine, accompanying an article about her parenting style. The photograph, which was taken in 2004 when the child was 20 months old, showed Rowling pushing David in a buggy on an Edinburgh street.

Rowling and her husband Neil Murray argued that their son's right to privacy had been invaded by the picture, and sought damages from Express Newspapers and the photo owners Big Pictures, as well as an injunction which would ban further publication of the snap. The couple had filed the lawsuit on behalf of their son.

However, a High Court judge ruled that "the law does not...allow them to carve out a press-free zone for their children in respect of absolutely everything they choose to do".

He added: "I have considerable sympathy for the claimant's parents and anyone else who wishes to shield their children from intrusive media attention... [but] an area of routine activity which, when conducted in a public place, carries no guarantee of privacy."

Judge Patten ordered that Rowling and her husband must pay £40,000 interim costs to Big Pictures, pending the outcome of an appeal. A temporary ban has been placed on publication of the photograph until the appeal has taken place.

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