Research Articles

Counter-terrorism Laws: How They Affect Media Freedom and News Reporting



This article examines the actual and potential effects that Australian counter-terrorism laws have on public discussion and access to information, exploring how democratic commitments to media freedom might best be balanced against contemporary demands of national security. It analyses how the laws affect the media’s ability to investigate and report on matters of public interest. It explains how the research has been conducted; identifies some of the main elements of the legal framework and the way that those elements may affect, and sometimes have affected, the media; and offers some tentative conclusions about the ways that the media have been affected which are not directly, causally attributable to the suite of counter-terrorism laws but which are important to understanding the contemporary relationship between media freedom and public discussion of matters of public interest where national security is concerned.

Keywords: media law, journalism, freedom of speech, counter-terrorism

How to Cite: McNamara, L. (2017) “Counter-terrorism Laws: How They Affect Media Freedom and News Reporting”, Westminster Papers in Communication and Culture. 6(1). doi: