So, Sue Me!

Moderator: Karen Middleton • Louise Milligan, Ginger Gorman, Michael West and Richard Potter

6.00PM – 7.00PM
King's Hall
Museum of Australian Democracy

Australia prides itself on freedom of expression, yet we have the most draconian laws in the Western world. How can we uphold a free press when defamation law is having a chilling effect on our media and threatens to undermine the very foundations of investigative journalism?



Louise Milligan is an investigative reporter for the ABC’s Four Corners. She covered the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Abuse. Her exclusive stories for the ABC’s 7.30 on the allegations against George Pell won her two Quill Awards from the Melbourne Press Club, including the Gold Quill for best story of the year. In 2017 she was awarded the Walkley Book Award and the Sir Owen Dixon Chambers Law Reporter of the Year Award for Cardinal. Her latest book is Witness.



Ginger Gorman is an award-winning print and radio journalist based in the Australian Capital Territory. She is also a 2006 World Press Institute Fellow. Her freelance work has been published in print and online in publications such as, The Huffington Post, Guardian Australia, The Age and the ABC’s Drum website.



Michael West is a Walkley award-winning journalist who has worked as a stockbroker and business editor. He started his career with The Australian Financial Review and worked most recently with The Sydney Morning Herald where he conducted investigations into multinational tax avoidance and bank fraud among other things. He is the founder of MichaelWestMedia, a news website specialising in investigative journalism in the areas of business, finance, tax, and energy.



Richard is a Sydney silk who specialises in all aspects of media law, including defamation. Richard represents media publishers, major Australian book publishers, television broadcasters and online news publishers in relation to defamation, contempt, suppression and copyright issues, including pre-publication advice and litigation. Richard has extensive experience appearing for both plaintiffs and defendants in defamation actions. Recent cases include acting for Fairfax v Voller in the High Court (as junior counsel) and for Shane Bazzi in the trial of Dutton v Bazzi in the Federal Court.



Karen Middleton is chief political correspondent for The Saturday Paper and author of two books, An Unwinnable War: Australia in Afghanistan and Albanese: Telling it Straight. Karen has worked in the Canberra press gallery since 1989 and served as its president for four years. An experienced television, radio and newspaper commentator, she appears regularly on the ABC’s Insiders and Network Ten’s The Project. She is a freelance contributor to ABC radio, Monocle 24 Radio UK and Radio New Zealand and is based in Canberra.