Thursday, June 26, 2003
John Maltbie has a good summary of Batzel v. Smith (PDF), a new 9th Circuit decision limiting the libel liability and protecting the online speech rights of Web site managers. I'm still writing a brief and haven't had the chance to do more than skim the opinion, but Judge Gould's dissenting fears that the ruling "licenses professional rumor-mongers and gossip-hounds to spread false and hurtful information with impunity" are being widely reported. (Shouldn't that be "mongerers," by the way?)
I definitely will want to consider how this decision might bear on some of our panel's responses to Phil Wolff's questions, still in process. For now, more from:
- Reuters: "Court Limits Defamation Scope in Internet Case"
- Out-Law.com: "Defamation victory for web site and listserver operators"
- Ars Tecnica: "Starting vicious rumors over listservs ruled OK"
- c | net News.com (Declan McCullagh): "Libel ruling favors site operators"
- MSNBC: "Court limits scope on Net defamation"
Unless otherwise expressly stated, all original material of whatever nature created by Denise M. Howell and included in the Bag and Baggage weblog and any related pages, including the weblog's archives, is licensed under a Creative Commons License.