Judge reveals reasons behind Stig ruling
Monday 04 October 2010
A judge today announced his reasons for refusing to ban a book disclosing that Top Gear's The Stig is Ben Collins.
After a private hearing last month, Mr Justice Morgan said he would not grant the BBC an injunction blocking 35-year-old Mr Collins' autobiography - The Man In The White Suit.
The BBC had claimed that the publication by HarperCollins on September 16 would breach confidentiality obligations.
But, in a public ruling today, the judge said that while Mr Collins did owe a duty of confidentiality to the BBC, the identity of the mystery driver was so generally accessible that it could no longer be regarded as confidential.
He said that the press coverage, particularly in August, had gone well beyond speculation and statements in the media that Mr Collins was The Stig would be understood by the public as statements of fact.
"For all practical purposes, anyone who would have any interest in knowing the identity of The Stig now knows it.
"The identity of The Stig is no longer a secret and it is no longer confidential information."
He added: "In the present case, the identity of Mr Collins as The Stig is in the public domain.
"If that has caused and/or will cause harm to the BBC, I do not see how any further harm will be caused to the BBC if Mr Collins is allowed to publish his autobiography in time for the 2010 Christmas market."
Mr Collins has since joined rival show Fifth Gear where he will appear without his trademark helmet.
The ex-James Bond stunt double is due to make his debut on the Channel 5 show this week.
- 1 Rape threats, death threats and a police investigation after video poking fun at an Islamic Party in Malaysia goes viral
- 2 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 3 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
- 4 6-year-old writes ice cold Valentine's card to his stepmother
- 5 Syrian child photographed 'surrendering to camera because she thought it was a gun'
Rape threats, death threats and a police investigation after video poking fun at an Islamic Party in Malaysia goes viral
Why Robin Williams safeguarded himself against a morbid trend in advertising
Ohio Democrat Teresa Fedor speaks out during abortion debate to reveal she has been raped – and is interrupted by laughter from Republicans
Jeremy Clarkson to become 'special adviser on transport' to David Cameron
Exploding head syndrome: One-fifth of US college students suffer from ailment, study finds
Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
Revealed: Putin's army of pro-Kremlin bloggers
Katie Hopkins reported to the police for race hatred by Labour MP Simon Danczuk after tweet about Pakistani men
£14000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a security software com...
£10000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This provider of staffing and r...
£19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the four inns of Court is seeking...
£20000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the four inns of Court i...