iLocal News Archives

The Editor Speaks: The Grand Order of Gobble de gook

One of my biggest hates (yes I do have more than one) is gobble de gook and it seems when you work for government you are trained and elected into its Grand Order.

A few weeks ago I wrote on the seemingly ridiculous and ill thought out ban on photocopying of court documents that are once published in the public domain. The photocopying practice has been allowed here for years. I warned of the repercussions to this ban would be world wide and the interpretation it would bring. I was right. The enemies to this country must have rubbed their hands with glee.

The only explanation for this decision was publishing public court documents online COULD constitute a violation of copyright, It hasn’t up to now and highly questionable by all lawyers I have spoken to. And I do mean ALL.

Three local organisations have responded to the order with one financial commentator describing it as “Orwellian doublespeak” (a posher way of saying gobble de gook) while the publisher of a financial newsletter, our good friend David Marchant, said the action was “as disgraceful, indefensible and contemptible”. I have to agree with him.

Cayman Finance had to step in as the world press ganged up against our country jeering at us and saying it proved we had a lot to hide.

Jude Scott, Cayman Finance CEO, did his best saying, “The jurisdiction, including our world class courts system, is committed to reviewing and evolving best practice. Cayman is receptive to appropriate input and recommendations on existing and new practices and policies to ensure effectiveness and balance, while continuing Cayman’s tremendous benefits to the global economy.”

In a joint statement, the Cayman Islands Law Society and the Caymanian Bar Association said that both associations are committed to the rule of law including open justice, a system the Cayman Islands administers, enabling public scrutiny of the judicial process by which litigants’ rights are adjudicated.

“The Grand Court has confirmed and clarified that certified copies of documents are available to non parties as they have always been. However, it should be noted that rights of non parties (including representatives of the media) with respect to the copying of court documents must not be confused with the principle of open justice. It is an element. Access is granted to non parties to scrutinise the relevant judicial process itself, but in the common law world there is no unrestricted right to access. There is a balance to be struck with other competing interests, both public and private, and this is the context in which access to court documents is given,” the statement said.

I didn’t understand much of that but the writers have successfully gained entrance to the Grand Order of Gobble de gook


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