First Amendment limits libel suits by public figures Public Figures occupy

First amendment limits libel suits by public figures

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-Controversy must have existed before publication, most have been voluntarily and must be actively seeking to influence public opinionPublic Officials (people appointed or hired for government jobsIndividuals in all three categories must prove actual malice, which has two elements:–Proof of knowledge of falsity, or –Reckless disregard for the truthPrivate Persons: •If plaintiff does not meet the definition of public official, all-purpose public figure, or limited-purpose public figure, the court regards them as a private person•Private persons must only prove negligence, a “failure to exercise reasonable care”Negligence:Examples of Negligence–Reliance on an untrustworthy source–Not reading or misreading pertinent documents–Failure to check with an obvious source–Carelessness in editing and news handlingIn Masson v. New Yorker, the U.S. Supreme Court said changing words in a direct quotation was notactual malice unless the switch amounted to a material changein the meaning of the statement.Tort: A wrongful act that can lead to liability in civil court.Four Parts of the Tort:–The defendant’s conduct was intentional or reckless–The defendant’s conduct was extreme and

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