Miss Fiona Brimblecombe

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About me

Fiona Brimblecombe is a Wallscourt Fellow in Law (senior lecturer) at the University of the West of England. This role means she has a research focus alongside some teaching responsibilities.

Previously, Fiona obtained an LLB from Newcastle University in 2014, an LLM(distinction) from Durham University in 2015 and has recently passed her PhD viva (also in law), at Durham University. She obtained a Durham Law School Teaching Scholarship which meant that Fiona had three years consecutive teaching experience at Durham Law School leading seminar groups in tort law and seminars and lectures in media law.

Her PhD sought to answer the question of how best to protect privacy and reputation rights online circa 2019 and whether the 'right to be forgotten' in the General Data Protection Regulation 2016 (and the Data Protection Act 2018) will act as a new bastion for online reputation-rights. It also considered the English torts of misuse of private information and defamation and their  inability to effectively give redress for the infringement of personality rights online in the digital age.

Recent research

Fiona has co-authored a 66 page Article (alongside Professor Gavin Phillipson) in the Canadian Journal of Comparative and Contemporary Law in 2018 which considers how Article 17, the 'right to be forgotten' in the General Data Protection Regulation 2016 applies to online expression. It argued that Article 8 ECHR as interpreted by the Strasbourg court is likely to be an important factor in the understanding of the new right to be forgotten. The article employed a number of 'data dissemination' scenarios and extrapolated certain balancing factors used by the Strasbourg court when establishing a 'reasonable expectation of privacy' under Article 8 ECHR. It considered how these factors apply to potential claims brought under the right to be forgotten.

She has currently submitted her next article for publication which relates to Article 10 'balancing' at Strasbourg and how this will influence the interpretation of the right to be forgotten's free expression exemptions. It evaluates the 'balancing factors' that the Strasbourg court adopts when considering whether an Article 10 claim has weight, and how these factors can be read across. She is also preparing two further pieces for publication regarding the ineffectiveness of misuse of private information and defamation law regarding online reputation.

Conference Papers

The interpretation of Article 17 of the GDPR and Article 8 jurisprudence at Strasbourg', at 'Tearing Down the Mighty Walls of Injustice', Human Rights Centre Annual Postgraduate Conference, Durham Law School, May 2016

'The reasonable expectation of privacy test and the right to be forgotten' at 'Restricted and Redacted: where now for human rights and digital informational control?', Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, November 2016

'Publication in the public interest in Strasbourg and the right to be forgotten', at 'Defending Individual Rights', Human Rights Centre Annual Postgraduate Conference, Durham Law School, May 2017

Area of expertise

Privacy, GDPR, data protection, defamation, Articles 8 and 10 European Convention on Human Rights, Strasbourg jurisprudence, misuse of private information


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