No, Meghan Markle hasn’t lost
IF YOU believe the Daily Mail, it won a stunning legal victory on 1 May. Take a deep breath and read the online headline: "'This is a like a train ploughing into a petrol tanker. A complete disaster': Legal experts say judge's decision to dismiss major parts of Meghan Markle's letter case against Mail on Sunday is a 'humiliation'".
This is, er, not quite true. The actual judgment makes it abundantly clear why. It summarises the claim against the Daily Mail:
Three causes of action are relied on: misuse of private information, breach of duty under the General Data Protection Regulation (EU) 2016/679 (GDPR), and infringement of copyright. The claimant seeks damages, including aggravated damages, for misuse of private information, and compensation under the GDPR. She claims damages, including additional 'flagrancy' damages, for copyright infringement. Other remedies claimed in addition, or in the alternative, include injunctions to restrain further publication, licensing, dissemination or processing of the claimant's private information or copyright material; orders for the cessation of processing, the erasure of the personal data, and the communication to third parties of such cessation and erasure; and delivery up and forfeiture of all copies of 'the Letter' in the defendant's possession, power, custody or control.
So what has the court rejected?
...allegations that (1) the defendant acted dishonestly, and in bad faith; (2) the defendant deliberately dug up or stirred up conflict between the claimant and her father; and (3)the claimant was distressed by the defendant's 'obvious agenda of publishing intrusive or offensive stories about [her] intended to portray her in a false and damaging light'...
In plainer language, lawyers for Meghan Markle added some extra sauce - allegations about the way in which the Mail broke the law - and the judge said "just the meat, please". The meat remains, er, meaty - particularly, from our point of view, the claim for abuse of Meghan's copyright in letters that she wrote. It anything, Friday's ruling puts the focus back on the issues of substance. The case continues.