Victoria Beckham fails in privacy bid

Court refuses summary judgment in privacy action against Grazia

Victoria Beckham has lost her bid to cut short a privacy action against Grazia magazine after the High Court refused to grant her summary judgment.


The star brought proceedings over an article in the April edition of Grazia, “Victoria’s 1am crisis talks with David” claiming that it breached her privacy by purporting to reveal details of a text message and telephone calls between her and her husband after he had gone for a night out in Los Angeles whilst she was at home in Britain.


Resiting the application for summary judgment, Matthew Nicklin for Grazia told the High Court in London: “Expectation of privacy depends on who you are and what you do. Although privacy claims by people in the public eye are nothing new, this is the first case where the court has had to deal with someone who makes the exploitation and sale of their personal privacy the touchstone of their fame.”


Mrs Beckham’s barrister told the court that it was up to her what private information was put into the public domain: “This is a publication which is simply designed to entertain the readers of Grazia for its own commercial purposes.”


Ruling in favour of Grazia, Mr Justice Eady held that the action should proceed to trial: “The Defendant says that this case is not really about privacy, but image control. That will have to be an issue that is addressed at trial.”


The Judge ordered Mrs Beckham to pay Grazia’s costs of the hearing, £15,750 of which must be paid within 14 days.


5RB‘s Matthew Nicklin (instructed by Wiggin) is acting for Grazia.