N – Living in a world of euphemism

Pre-emptive editing by lawyers “forces us to live in a world of euphemism,” said Tracey Brown, managing director of Sense About Science, at a recent panel discussion about English libel law. “Even if you win you could still lose £100 000 and a year or two of your career,” said the science writer Simon Singh, who is embroiled in a case brought against him by the British Chiropractic Association (http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/339/oct28_2/b4429). The Index on Censorship has published a report on the current situation, with recommendations for reform (www.libelreform.org). The UK home secretary Jack Straw has pledged to end libel tourism, the Times reports (http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/law/article6926997.ece).