Ag-gag laws in Australia Discussion paper

1 The term ‘Ag-gag’ was originally coined by New York Times journalist Mark Bittman in 2011; see Bittman, M. ‘Who Protects the Animals?’ New York Times, 26 April 2011 <>.

2 For a summary of investigations by four of America’s leading animal protection organisations since 2011, see: Animal Visuals, ‘Ag-gag laws and factory farm investigations mapped’ <>.

3 Ibid.

4 Willingham, R, and Allard, T. ‘Ban on live cattle trade to Indonesia’ The Age, 8 June 2011 <>; Ockenden, W. ‘Industry suspends live trade to Egypt’ ABC Rural, 6 May 2013 <>.

5 See, Rural Affairs and Transport References Committee (2011) Animal Welfare Standards in Australia’s Live Export Markets, Australian Senate; and Farmer, B. (2011) Independent Review of Australia’s Livestock Export Trade, Report commissioned by the Australian Government <>.

6 See, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (Cth) Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) 16 May 2012 <>.

7 ABC News, ‘Abattoir charged over pig bashing footage’ 16 January 2013 <>.

8 March, S. ‘Abattoir closed over animal cruelty concerns’ ABC News, 30 November 2011 <>.

9 Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, ‘Pepe’s Ducks to pay $400,000 arising from false, misleading and deceptive conduct’ 19 December 2012 <>.

10 Bush Telegraph. ‘The battle over animal welfare and ag-gag laws’ ABC Radio National, 21 July 2014

11 See Bettles, C. ‘Senator backs ‘ag gags’’ The Land, 4 July 2013 <>; and Bettles, C. ‘Support for ‘ag gag’ move’ The Land, 28 May 2013 <>.

12 ASPCA, ‘Statement of opposition to proposed “Ag-gag” laws from broad spectrum of interest groups’ <>.

13 See, Animal Visuals, ‘Ag-gag laws and factory farm investigations mapped’ <>.

14 Flynn, D. ‘2012 Legislative season ends with ‘Ag-gag’ bills defeated in 11 states’ Food Safety News, 30 July 2013 <>.

15 MSN News, ‘Nation’s first ‘ag gag’ prosecution dismissed in Utah’ 1 May 2013 <>.

16 Wells, S. ‘Landmark ‘Ag gag’ lawsuit fights threat to freedom of speech’ Huffington Post, 23 July 2013 <>.

17 Cagle, S. ‘A gag too far: how ag-gag laws can backfire’ Grist, 26 April 2013 <>.

18 Editorial Board, ‘Eating with our eyes closed’ New York Times, 9 April 2013 <>.

19 Bittman, M. ‘Who Protects the Animals?’ New York Times, 26 April 2011 <>.

20 Gibson, M. ‘US gag laws are violating press freedom – they should not be expanded overseas’ The Guardian, 31 July 2013 <>.

21 Moyers, B. ‘Ag-gag laws silence factory farm whistleblowers’ Huffington Post, 11 July 2013 <>.

22 For an example see, See Mickelburough, P. ‘Abattoir Shut Amid Animal Cruelty Claims’ Herald Sun, 25 November 2011 <>; Cannane, S. ‘Abattoir shut down over cruelty concerns’ ABC News, 10 February 2012 <>; Fitzsimmons, H. ‘Victorian abattoir accused of cruel treatment of unwanted dairy calves’ Lateline ABC, 1 February 2013 <>; Levy, M. ‘Torture for fun’: police given shocking abattoir footage’ Sydney Morning Herald, 21 March 2013 <>; Herbert, B. ‘Disturbing footage prompts calls for duck farming changes’ ABC 7.30 Report, 19 June 2012 <>; Knaus, C. ‘Police, RSPCA probe ‘cruelty’ at piggery’ The Canberra Times, 6 August 2012 <>; Langdon, A. ‘Roam Free’ 60 Minutes, 28 March 2013 <>.

23 Editorial Board, ‘Cruelty to farm animals demands exposure’ Washington Post, 27 April 2013 <>.

24 For a discussion about the social legitimacy of activist activities, see McCausland, C, O’Sullivan, S, & Brenton, S. (2013) ‘Trespass, Animals


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WildLife Rules!: Ag-gag laws in Australia Discussion paper
Ag-gag laws in Australia Discussion paper
Ag-gag laws in Australia Discussion paper
WildLife Rules!
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