Internet On Trial

Internet On Trial

Modern Day Litigation, Cyber Defamation, and Law in Sports & Entertainment

Category Archives: Defamation

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Chopped-up fingers and bruised egos: How can I find out who posted disparaging comments about me anonymously on the internet?

Posted in Defamation, Internet & Media Law, Social Media Law
People who believe their professional reputations or personal integrity have been unfairly impugned by materials anonymously posted on the internet are not defenseless against their unnamed tormentors. Is it possible to discover the identity of those behind anonymous posts? Yes. But it’s not easy, especially if you don’t have experience communicating with the various webmasters,… Continue Reading

Is it defamation to … tell someone to eat shit?

Posted in Defamation
This is an easy one. No. By definition, defamation is a false statement of fact, which damages another’s reputation or character. So, telling someone to eat shit, which is nothing but a more colorful way of saying ‘go fly a kite,’ is not defamation. Then why did HBO get sued along with its show host,… Continue Reading

What is the “single publication rule,” and why should you care?

Posted in Cyber-defamation, Defamation, First Amendment, New Jersey, Ohio
  You’ve probably heard the term statute of limitations before, and you might even know what it is — the time limit for filing a lawsuit, which is established by a state legislature or Congress, and defines the absolute deadline that a suit can be filed after the occurrence of the event that gave rise to the… Continue Reading

Sutton Knocks Another One Out of the Park, Shuts Down $19 Trillion Suit Against Google

Posted in Cyber-defamation, Defamation, Internet & Media Law, Litigation & Appeals
Pro tip: If ever you Google yourself, and are unhappy with the results, don’t sue Google. Why not? Because under a federal law known as the Communications Decency Act, websites and/or services that only republish or display content created by third-parties — i.e. sites that don’t create their own substantive content — are not liable for the substance of… Continue Reading

Avvo Ruling Doesn’t Create a Green Light for Anonymous Defamation

Posted in Cyber-defamation, Defamation, First Amendment, Internet & Media Law
People are making much ado about this week’s decision out of a Washington state appellate court surrounding a negative online review on the popular lawyer website Avvo.com. But it’s really much ado about nothing. The Avvo decision didn’t change the law; its chief holding is that people who post to the Internet anonymously can remain anonymous under protections granted… Continue Reading

California’s “Yelp” Bill Becomes Law

Posted in Cyber-defamation, Defamation, Internet & Media Law, Social Media Law
In this age social media justice, sooner or later you’re going to have an encounter with a negative online review, whether your a business owner, or simply a consumer. It seems like it’s becoming an accepted aspect of our lives. Increasingly, however, consumer reviews posted on various Internet sites are becoming the subject of litigation.… Continue Reading

What Lies Ahead for Roger Clemens?

Posted in Defamation, Sports
No pun intended. Seriously. After U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton declared a mistrial in the government’s perjury case against Roger Clemens last week, the 300-win hard-throwing right-hander’s future is somewhat in limbo. That is because a mistrial is not an acquittal. An acquittal is when a jury unanimously finds that the prosecution failed to prove the… Continue Reading

West Moves to Overturn $5M Defamation Verdict

Posted in Defamation, Right of Publicity, Trademark
Follow-up: Jury Awards Professors $5M in Defamation Suit Against West   No surprise here; West Publishing has filed a motion to set aside the jury’s $5,000,000 verdict in the case brought against them by the two law professors whom West defamed by selling books bearing the professors’ names, which contained out-of-date and erroneous statements of… Continue Reading

Jury Awards Professors $5M in Defamation Suit Against West

Posted in Defamation, Intellectual Property, Media Law, Right of Publicity, Trademark
  For everyone who says that juries aren’t giving out mega-verdicts anymore, here’s your exception: Last week, a federal jury in Philadelphia gave a $5,000,000 early X’mas present to a couple law professors in a defamation suit.† (Jury’s Verdict pdf file). Outside of legal contexts, the term defamation gets thrown around a lot, and although… Continue Reading