06__presentation__libel

06__presentation__libel - Are these the same things?...

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    Are these the same things? Defamation Libel Slander
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    At the heart of libel cases… First Amendment, right to publish,  robust debate vs. individual’s right to protect his  reputation, dignity.
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    How do you avoid losing a  libel suit? Be a  very good journalist!
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    Criminal libel statutes Criminal libel is the crime of making public  statements that tend to disturb the peace,  usually by either inciting racial hatred or  criticizing public officials. They often are found to be void for  vagueness. Also, cases too closely resemble seditious  libel prosecutions, according to some courts.
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    Who can sue for libel? A living individual; not a dead person  (per N.C. statute) A business A nonprofit group like a church or a  charity The government cannot successfully  sue for libel.  Why?
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    Six essential elements of  a libel suit 1. Defamation: Something that causes  one to be held up to hatred, ridicule or  contempt.  Accusations taken in their  everyday meaning. Usually  accusations of criminal activity,  professional incompetence or moral  failings .
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    Three kinds of defamation in  N.C. Libel per se Quarterback Joe Smith is a murderer. Publications susceptible of two  interpretations, one defamatory and one not Quarterback Joe Smith is like O.J. Simpson. Libel per quod Quarterback Joe Smith did not travel with the team to  Arizona Friday.  (Add that to the information that Coach  Bunting said one student was not allowed to travel with  the team last week because he was found to have  illegal drugs in his locker.) 
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    Case precedents Precedents for three types of defamation  in N.C.:  Flake v. Greensboro News Co.  Observer (1984)
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    What statements could be  defamatory? Saying someone is an alcoholic or a  homosexual But not calling someone a racially  insensitive name Not saying Dr. P. is 65 years old (but  she might punish you anyway!)
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    Six essential elements of  a libel suit (cont.) 1.   Identification  Requires third-party  recognition
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    Identification (cont.) Group libel rule applies when a  group is defamed and one  member of that group sues for  libel.  Is that individual identified  for purposes of a libel suit?
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    Group libel rules a. groups of fewer than 100:  each  member of group is identified b. groups of more than 100: no  individual member of the group is  identified
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  Six essential elements of  a libel suit (cont.) 1.   Publication The allegedly libelous charge must  reach a third party. When is a press release 
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06__presentation__libel - Are these the same things?...

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