Media access is crucial to the “Open Court” principle, where citizens’ knowledge of what occurs in our courtrooms ensures that the judicial system is fair, just and accountable. Media access to the courts often requires a balance between a free information flow and individual privacy rights (for example, for youth), as well as an accused’s right to a fair trial. In Canada, media access to the courts is mandated by law, and exceptions must be justified on a case-by-case basis. Media access encompasses issues such as publication bans, the recording of court proceedings with audio devices and the use of new media such as Twitter.
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