Friday 17 November 2017

'Irish Mail on Sunday' faces legal action over its use of 'Tribune' style

Peter Flanagan

Peter Flanagan

THE parent of the 'Irish Mail on Sunday' -- Associated Newspapers -- could face legal action over its controversial use of the 'Sunday Tribune' front page layout at the weekend.

The National Consumer Agency in Ireland (NCAI) said it is "actively pursuing" a complaint from the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) and is considering taking enforcement action against the company for breach of the Consumer Protection Act.

The 'Sunday Tribune' has also lodged a complaint to the NCAI.

The special edition of the 'Mail', which bore a remarkable resemblance to the 'Tribune', was described by the newspaper as being "designed for readers of the 'Sunday Tribune'".


The 'Sunday Tribune' went into receivership last week, putting 43 jobs at risk. It will not be published for the next four weeks while its receiver, James Luby, seeks a buyer for the title.

Mr Luby could not be reached for comment last night but one legal source indicated it was likely action could be taken against Associated Newspapers.

"There are two potential avenues open to the 'Tribune'. If the paper was trademarked then it could take a straight breach of copyright action. Even if it wasn't trademarked there is a separate tort for 'passing off' as someone else and essentially trading on the back of its good name," they said.

A number of people have contacted the NUJ saying they purchased the 'Tribune' as a gesture of support, not realising it was actually the 'Irish Mail on Sunday'.

Irish Independent

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