Online defamation case won

Jury awards plaintiff $4.5 mil for internet defamation

In case you’re wondering what the latest trend is for online defamation (like the case in Hoboken, where two Zimmer Bloggers are accused of personally trying destroy the life of a family), over in Michigan, a jury awarded a plaintiff $4.5 million recently.

The plaintiff’s lawyer said: “Defamation refers to statements that are false that you say about another person. If you say my neighbor is having sex in a park with children, that is defamation. That is not First Amendment-protected. It’s not opinion. It’s provable as false. You can be held responsible financially.”

And in New Jersey – the Presumed-Damages doctrine was upheld in defamation cases, which probably makes the defendants here in the mile square case a bit nervous. We’ll see what pans out!

online defamation case michigan jury awards plaintiff

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back to the boken
back to the boken
Thursday, August 23, 2012 9:59 am

like all, i’m curious to see how this plays out. not sure “damages” can be articulated with the “false” statements. i.e. the plaintiff’s did not move to town X. how will they claim damages from a statement like that? to simply lie, or misspeak is not defamation. if someone calls me joe, but my name is john, that’s a lie or mistake…it doesn’t damage me though.

the case referenced in michigan is different in my opinion. saying someone has sexual relations with kids is not in the same ballpark as the alleged actions by bloggers and internet posters.

who should supeona the two names the bloggers have been “picking on”? the defendants, or the plaintiff’s? if i’m the plaintiff, i’m getting those names first and foremost to “prove” it’s not me.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012 3:34 pm

It will be interesting, assuming that the defendants subpoena the records for the two names they have been picking on, and see who these people all are. Given the politics of this town, it would not surprise me if may be the same people, but they used Tor or some other proxies to hide their true IP address and then filed suit. On second thought, no one in politics in this town is smart enough to cover their tracks.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012 1:08 pm

Don’t know the parties on either side but based on what I’ve read, the bloggers could be screwed. In this great country of ours, freedom of speech is our right. However, you can’t print or publish stuff that’s untrue or unsubstantiated without informing the public it’s solely opinion. Seems like cyberbullying, slander, libel, whatever you want to call it.

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