Defamation

Defamation is a false statement, either written or oral, that harms the reputation of another person. In order to recover for defamation, a victim must establish that 1) the statement was false 2) the statement... more +
Defamation is a false statement, either written or oral, that harms the reputation of another person. In order to recover for defamation, a victim must establish that 1) the statement was false 2) the statement was communicated or published to a third party 3) the defendant caused the statement to be communicated or published, either intentionally or at least negligently 4) some harm was suffered as a result. less -
News & Analysis as of

Trump libel win based on Trump libel loss

President-elect Donald Trump just won a libel case against a critic — for the very same reason that real estate developer Donald Trump lost a libel case against a critic, more than 30 years ago. And yes, the precedent of...more

Defamation Law Series: Wisconsin Court of Appeals Affirms Dismissal of Firefighter Aaron Marjala’s Claim for Defamation

The Wisconsin Court of Appeals recently affirmed the trial court’s dismissal of firefighter Aaron Marjala’s claim for defamation against a news network, Robert Whitaker (chief of the fire department), television journalist...more

Foreign Officials, Defamation Claims and the DC anti-SLAPP Statute

First was the lawsuit filed by Yasser Abbas, the son of the Palestinian President, against Foreign Policy Group and one of its reporters, alleging that they defamed him by asking whether he was profiting from his father’s...more

California Employment Law Notes - January 2017

$90 Million Judgment Reinstated: Employers Must Relieve Employees Of All Duties During Their Rest Periods - Augustus v. ABM Sec. Servs., Inc., 2016 WL 7407328 (Cal. S. Ct. 2016) - Jennifer Augustus filed this...more

D.C. Court of Appeals Allows Prominent Climate Scientist’s Defamation Suit to Proceed

Dr. Michael Mann is a prominent climate scientist who is well-known for his “hockey stick” graph depicting a dramatic increase in global temperatures during the 20th century. On July 13, 2012, Rand Simberg published a blog...more

Defamation Law Series: Third Circuit Court of Appeals Affirms Dismissal of Renita Hill’s Claims Against Bill Cosby

The Third Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed the Pennsylvania district court’s dismissal of Renita Hill’s claims against Bill Cosby in Hill v. Cosby. Hill was among the women who alleged that Cosby had drugged...more

Fox News Opinions Get Wide Berth Under Defamation Law

Megyn Kelly and other Fox News commenters did not defame a Wisconsin firefighter when they said it was “not right,” “disgusting,” and a “fraud” that he “exploited [a] supposed injury” to collect disability benefits “for...more

Personal and Corporate Reputation: Five Lessons from 2016

On November 19, 2014, Sabrina Erdely’s Rolling Stone article “A Rape on Campus: A Brutal Assault and Struggle for Justice at UVA” went viral. The article depicted the violent gang rape of a University of Virginia student...more

A Closer Look at the New Lawsuit By Baylor Football Coach Art Briles

It’s been a tough few months for Baylor football and its former coach Art Briles. Baylor fired Briles in May of this year, after an outside law firm investigated the school’s response to alleged sexual assaults by football...more

Executive Labor Summary - November / December 2016

NEWS & ANALYSIS - President-Elect Trump chooses Andrew F. Puzder for U.S. Secretary of Labor – “the times they are a changin’.” As we reported at the time, on December 8 President-Elect Trump announced that Andrew F....more

Law Alert: Villasenor v. Evans

Notice of Claim Statute Applies to Elected Official - In this case, the court of appeals confirmed that the notice of claim statute applies to elected officials. Villasenor was a consultant and lobbyist for a developer...more

Former American Idol Contestant’s Defamation and False Light Claims Dismissed

The California Court of Appeal recently dismissed former American Idol contestant Corey Clark’s claims against Radar Online, LLC (“Radar”), concluding that Radar’s anti-SLAPP motion should have been granted. In 2003,...more

Social Media and Georgia’s New Anti-SLAPP Statute

These days, one of the most effective ways to advertise your business is through social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. At virtually no cost, social media allows you to conveniently market your...more

The Freedom to Yelp: Congress Curbs ToS Overreach

Worried about a company retaliating against you when you post a negative review on Yelp or TripAdvisor? Worry no longer because Congress has your back. Last week, Congress passed a law that will make it illegal for companies...more

Chris Lazarini Discusses Whether Defamatory Statements Constitute Libel Per Se

Bass, Berry & Sims attorney Chris Lazarini discussed a case where defendant carried out a personal vendetta against the plaintiff following plaintiff's report against defendant for violations of securities laws. Following...more

In a Rough Year for CDA §230, Manchanda v. Google Provides Comfort to Website Operators

As we noted in our recent post on the Ninth Circuit case Kimzey v. Yelp! Inc., in the right circumstances, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) still provides robust protection against liability for website...more

Ninth Circuit Reaffirms Section 230 Protections

Information Counts. That’s the title of this blog. And it’s an indisputable fact. Information is – and has been for at least 20 years – the currency of our economy, providing consumers, regulators and the general public...more

Insurance Recovery Group News: Bad Faith Ruling Against The Travelers Affirmed In Massachusetts

Recently the Massachusetts Appeals Court upheld a ruling that The Travelers Companies Inc. violated the Massachusetts Consumer Protection Act, M.G.L. c. 93A, as well as the Massachusetts unfair claims settlement practices...more

Yelp Case Shows CDA §230 Still Has Teeth

2016 has been a challenging year for Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) and the website operators who depend on it for protection against liability stemming from user-generated content. An unusually large...more

Gawker Remains in the Crosshairs: Seventh Circuit Finds that Online Media Publisher Can Be Liable for Defamatory Third-Party User...

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently kept alive one of the multitude of legal entanglements ensnaring Gawker Media LLC, as the Court reversed and remanded a lower court’s decision to dismiss a plaintiff’s defamation...more

No Winners in Rolling Stone Verdict

A verdict was announced November 4, in Nicole P. Eramo v. Rolling Stone, LLC, et al., Civil Action No. 3:15-CV-00023, striking a legal and financial blow for the publication and its journalist, Sabrina Rubin Erdely. A...more

The Cosby Show: The Insurance Coverage Episode

On November 8, 2016, the District Court in the District of Massachusetts held that AIG has a duty to defend Bill Cosby against pending defamation claims under both Massachusetts and California law. The court rejected AIG’s...more

A New Shorting Strategy: Short Selling Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities

St. Jude’s Medical has filed a defamation lawsuit against short-seller, Muddy Waters LLC, and cyber-security research company, MedSec Holdings, along with executives at the companies, following allegations by the companies of...more

Rolling Stone Rolls With Early Favorable Rulings

Rolling Stone is not the first media outlet to defend itself in a multi-million dollar trial this year. Gawker Media was recently hit with a $140 million judgment resulting from a suit by Terry Bollea (a.k.a. Hulk Hogan) for...more

Defamation Takes A Holiday: Slander And The Salem Witch Trials

Hypothetical: You go out for a nice stroll one Halloween only to have a neighbor emerge from his house with a pitchfork and accuse you of being a witch in front of the whole village. For the sake of argument, let’s say you...more

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