Libel / slander

Cyber Liability Insurance: Large Firms Should Hedge Risks

November 14th 2009

Online marketing has moved many firms toward a publishing model to generate market awareness and engagement. This has spawned a broader range of public exchanges with both customers and the public as they share ideas on company sites, and as company staff participate on others’ sites in official or quasi-official roles. There may fewer customers [...]

Peter Quinn & How Microsoft Smeared Its Way to Winevitability

October 20th 2009

The InformationWeek cover story had two elements. First was the illustration, which featured a compass with Windows 7 at true North, the headline “Winevitable,” and the question of how you will get there. That’s the kind of positioning money just can’t buy. Imagine producing software whose inevitability is proclaimed on the editorial cover of magazines. [...]

Finkel v. Facebook: Online Defamation Case Tests the Limits of Defamation Law

March 26th 2009

Recently we’ve seen an employer charged with defamation for making true disclosures that would hurt a former employee, and Medical Justice which seeks to prevent online defamation by prohibiting patients from participating in social media. Now, a New York teenager has sued Facebook and a handful of its users for discussing her in a private [...]

“Medical Justice” Gags Prospective Patients from Posting

March 20th 2009

Imagine if everything you discussed with your physician was required to be kept private. Not just information about you, the patient, but that information about your treatment by the physician had to be kept private too. The blog e-patients describes how the firm Medical Justice is helping doctors avoid consumer ratings, and the prospect of defamatory [...]

1st Circuit Denies Rehearing Staples v. Noonan, Truthful Defamation Stands in Massachusetts

March 19th 2009

The US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit has denied a petition to rehear the case that found that truthful statements in email can constitute defamation if they are made with malice. See our earlier post on Noonan v. Staples. The appeals court held that Staples failed to adequately raise the constitutional issue: Staples now [...]

Can You Be Defamed by a Truthful Email in Massachusetts?

March 12th 2009

“The truth is an absolute defense to a claim of defamation.” But perhaps not always in Massachusetts, and that’s a problem. Judge Juan Torruella of the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit has allowed Alan Noonan, a sales director fired by Staples, to pursue his libel claim against the company. Staples’s executive vice [...]

Is Leaving Negative Feedback on eBay Libelous?

October 29th 2008

Can you be sued for leaving negative seller feedback on eBay? Chris Read, a 42-year-old mechanic from the UK, purchased a mobile phone on eBay for £155 (about $246). When it arrived, he discovered it was not the model that was advertised and that it was not in very good condition. Read followed standard eBay [...]