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Flashcards in Defamation Deck (17):
1


(1) Defamation Definition

 

False, defamatory statement of fact that attaches to the plaintiff that was intentionally or negligently published and is damaging to reputation through slander, slander per se, or libel.

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(2)

What was the statement?

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(3) False Statement of Fact definition

A statement that is not substantially true that can be proven true or false and the person is intending to be factual. Must not be an opinion or hyperbole. Theprivater person plaintiff has burden of proof regarding private concerns.

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(4)

Is it false?

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(5) Defamatory Statement

Communication tending to damage the plaintiff's reputation by diminshing respect, good will, confidence, or esteem in which he is held to excite adverse or unpleasant feelings about him in a respectable segment in society.

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(6)

Attaches to P

  • one person with knowledge of the surrounding circumstances could reasonably connect the stament to P.
  • Group: small (everyone can sue),   medium (depends on intensity), large (no one can sue)

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(7)

Published?

  • Intentional: desire or knowledge to a substantial certainity to publish and but for the intentional publishing P' reputation would not be injured.
  • Negligence: Pg v BU

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(8) a

Was it damaging?

What type of defamation?

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(8) b Types of Defamation

  1. Slander: (Oral or transitory)
  2. Slander per se: (Business/Profession, Serious Crime,  Unchastity, Loathsome Disease)
  3. Libel: (Written or Permanent)

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(9)

Constitutional: The first amendment protection of free must be weighed against the common law rights.

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(10) False statement as to truth

As to a public concern with private person

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Public Person

Limited Public Figure

  1. Pre-exisiting purpose publib conterversy
  2. Did P play a significant role in the pre-existing controversy?
  3. Statement relevant to controversy.

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(10) B Public Figure

Policy makers, candiates, those who have substantial responsibilty or control over governmental affairs.

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(10) C All Purpose Public Figure

  1. Pre-existing public controversy
  2. Play significant role in controversy/thrust themselves into controversy
  3. Statement made is relevant to controversy.

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Public or Private Concern?

Look at content, form, context.

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Standards

  • Public: NY Times
  • Private P/Public concern: Gertz
  • Private P/Private Concern: N

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Common Law Defenses

  1. AbosoluteL Judicial, Leglistative, Executive within scope of job.
  2. Conditional: P must prove statement was made to protect themselves or others.