Privacy in the digital age is a hot-button issue, from WikiLeaks to who owns your Facebook photos. With Liberty Victoria, we present a hypothetical discussion encompassing the church, child abuse, hackers, investigative journalism – and ethics. Julian Burnside will challenge former priest Peter Norden, journalist Mel Fyfe and law professor Spencer Zifcak on the rights of their professions to keep secrets or tell lies.
Melissa Fyfe is an investigative journalist with special interests in politics, government policy, social justice and the environment. Melissa joined the Age investigations unit in August 2011 after three years reporting on politics for the Sunday Age, including a stint in the Canberra press gallery.
Julian Burnside is a Melbourne barrister. He joined the Bar in 1976 and took silk in 1989. He specialises in commercial litigation, and has acted in many very contentious cases - the MUA Waterfront dispute; the Cash-for-Comment enquiry; cases for Alan Bond and Rose Porteous - but has become known for his human rights work and has acted pro bono in many refugee cases.
He is an outspoken opponent of the mistreatment of people who come to Australia seeking protection from persecution. His latest book is Watching Out: Reflections on Justice and Injustice (Scribe).
Peter Norden is an adjunct professor at RMIT, and former Catholic chaplain at Pentridge. In 2009, Peter left the priesthood and the church. After decades of service, he no longer identified with the institutional Catholic Church.
He was a vocal critic of the prison system and a strong advocate for prison reform. He worked to expose the oppression that led to the 1987 Jika Jika fire that killed five prisoners, and was required to identify their bodies. Today, he continues his advocacy of criminal and social-justice reform.
Spencer Zifcak is professor of law and director of the Institute of Legal Studies at Australian Catholic University. He obtained his PhD from the London School of Economics and Political Science.