N – Dawkins attacks libel law

Richard Dawkins has criticised UK libel law because of the “atmosphere of fear and uncertainty” that it creates for scientists who challenge claims about health products, the Guardian reports. The evolutionary biologist and author said that the law could have “disastrous consequences” for the public interest. He backs reform of the law to provide “a better balance” in favour of free speech. “If Simon [Singh, a writer being sued by the British Chiropractic Association] loses it will have major implications on the freedom . . . to engage in robust criticism of scientific and pseudoscientific work,” he said. (www.guardian.co.uk/science/2009/sep/20/richard-dawkins-libel-laws)