Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

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IvanV
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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by IvanV » Fri Feb 03, 2023 12:42 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 11:57 am
IvanV wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 11:18 am
-Johnny Depp suing Amber Heard, and winning. So it is possible to win a case against a rich person, although the plaintiff was also very rich. A very interesting and unusual outcome in that Depp won in Virginia having lost in London, when the latter is generally so much more plaintiff friendly. Though in fact Heard appealed, and that was settled with Heard paying much smaller damages than was first awarded. So probably Depp felt there was a risk of losing the appeal, and taking a smaller settlement still left satisfactory optics for him. He got 2 goes at this, which is normally not available, because he sued a newspaper rather than Heard herself in London - Heard was only a witness in that case.
I've seen it argued that one of the reasons why Depp won in Virginia was that his lawyers argued successfully that Heard had lied in the London case. If so his losing in the UK and winning in the US would make sense.
It is my understanding too that is the main factor. But they also ran that argument in London. The surprise is that it ran better in Virginia than London, when the burdens of proof lie so more on the plaintiff than defendant in Virginia, but the other way around in London. The implication of Depp's failure in London is that Heard was mostly believed and Depp mostly disbelieved. But the implication of the outcome in Virginia is that there was a large turnaround in the court's view of the credibility of the witnesses.

The Virginia court did believe Heard over Depp on some points - Heard did win one point of her counter-suit. But she only got a 10% reduction on the settlement for that. Depp would also have had stronger legal tests in the US, but in practice he overcame those.

It was probably relevant to the outcome that it was a jury trial in Virginia, but not in London. I would suspect a jury would be more likely to find Depp appealing than a judge. And Depp's lawyers would doubtless have had the practice from failing to get the court to believe them at the first attempt, and thus perhaps having a clearer view of what they might have to achieve to prevail.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by jimbob » Fri Feb 03, 2023 1:37 pm

IvanV wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 12:08 pm
jimbob wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 11:34 am
IvanV wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 11:18 am
...
The most prominent defamation cases in the US, at least from my view here the other side of the pond, recently all involve a very rich person being sued:

-Vernon Unsworth, cave diver, sued Elon Musk for being called a pedo. Musk won, successfully defending himself on the grounds that what he said was just invective. I was disappointed, but probably because of my attitude to Musk rather than the merits of his defence. On reflection, it seems clear it was invective rather than Musk being in possession of any evidence. In view of his defence, it would have been much cheaper for Musk to settle, while giving Unsworth satisfactory optics at the outcome. But Musk being Musk, maybe he wouldn't settle.
...
I disagree that it was only invective, given that he hired a private investigator to check out whether his accusations could be true
So I was going on the idea that saying something horrible, with no knowledge of it being true, and that being widely appreciated that you had no knowledge, could reasonably be taken as invective.

But you point out that there is bit more to it than that. He seems to have said it, without any knowledge at time of saying, but seemingly with the hope that it might hit the mark. I agree that is rather nastier kind of thing than plain invective. I think I accepted it was just invective, once it became clear that there was no evidence for it. Ultimately Unsworth has protected his reputation despite losing the suit, in particular because of the invective defence eventually used by Musk.

I can now see that Musk's lawyer might have had a rather harder job to get him out of that one than a simple case of invective. Clearly I still hoped Musk would lose, but perhaps I was trying to find a way of reducing my disappointment at the outcome.
Yes, it was obviously intended to be a slur as opposed to what Musk claimed.
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by dyqik » Fri Feb 03, 2023 4:53 pm

It's worth noting that the rich defaming the less rich in the US has real violent outcomes. Alex Jones' attacks on the Sandy Hook parents resulted in graves of their children being disturbed, armed persons outside their houses threatening them, etc.

Trump's and other's claims about children's hospitals force children to undergo gender reassignment resulted in bomb threats, possible bomb attempts, and armed protesters threatening doctors. The recent attempts at inciting trans panics and Q-Anon nonsense has also resulted in armed invasions of homes, businesses and public buildings, including actual mass-shootings.

Under Millennie Al's regime, there would be no civil legal comeback for causing or inciting these terrorist attacks, and almost no options for criminal cases against the inciters, because they were not directly involved in planning the attacks.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by jimbob » Fri Feb 03, 2023 5:37 pm

dyqik wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 4:53 pm
It's worth noting that the rich defaming the less rich in the US has real violent outcomes. Alex Jones' attacks on the Sandy Hook parents resulted in graves of their children being disturbed, armed persons outside their houses threatening them, etc.

Trump's and other's claims about children's hospitals force children to undergo gender reassignment resulted in bomb threats, possible bomb attempts, and armed protesters threatening doctors. The recent attempts at inciting trans panics and Q-Anon nonsense has also resulted in armed invasions of homes, businesses and public buildings, including actual mass-shootings.

Under Millennie Al's regime, there would be no civil legal comeback for causing or inciting these terrorist attacks, and almost no options for criminal cases against the inciters, because they were not directly involved in planning the attacks.
Exactly. I don't think anyone would disagree that English (I'm not sure about Scottish) libel law needs reform but the initial idea of complete removal is a really bad idea..

And behind the spoiler is the post calling for the abolition not reform of libel law.

Also I have no idea how often less high-profile defamation (libel or slander) cases are brought. And none of us have any idea how much the law acts as to deter people from libelling or slandering others.

Spoiler:


Also, as has been pointed out. The following spoilered post has a really stupid false-equivalence, trying to equate someone whose assets have been frozen in the UK (according to due process) with someone whose assets have been frozen in Russia (according to a court system in thrall to the regime).


Spoiler:


That post argues for a general principle that is utterly inapplicable to the specific situation discussed.
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by EACLucifer » Fri Feb 03, 2023 5:51 pm

jimbob wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 5:37 pm
The following spoilered post has a really stupid false-equivalence, trying to equate someone whose assets have been frozen in the UK (according to due process) with someone whose assets have been frozen in Russia (according to a court system in thrall to the regime).
Falsely portraying the mote in the eye of democracies with the giant-sequoia sized beam in the eye of authoritarian regimes and then acting smug as if one has done something clever is one of the surest signs that someone is a dickhead with the political and intellectual maturity of, at best, a sixth-former who discovered politics six weeks ago.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by IvanV » Fri Feb 03, 2023 5:58 pm

In other libel news, I've only just noticed this rather delicious story from last week.

Andrew Bridgen MP, who had the Tory whip withdrawn for something along the lines of comparing Covid vaccination to the Holocaust, has issued a letter before action in libel to Matt Hancock, after asking for and failing to get a retraction from him. Hancock described him as anti-semitic and anti-vax in a tweet. For avoidance of doubt, Bridgen objects to both descriptions.

Bridgen's action is supported by the Bad Law Project, a right wing group, who seem to lack a functioning irony detector.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by monkey » Fri Feb 03, 2023 7:57 pm

IvanV wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 5:58 pm
Bridgen's action is supported by the Bad Law Project, a right wing group, who seem to lack a functioning irony detector.
Pretty sure they're more about the grift than the legal system.

(OT: I suspect this means that The Reclaim party will have an MP soon, given that they're the ones behind Bad Law Project.)

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by dyqik » Fri Feb 03, 2023 11:37 pm

monkey wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 7:57 pm
IvanV wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 5:58 pm
Bridgen's action is supported by the Bad Law Project, a right wing group, who seem to lack a functioning irony detector.
Pretty sure they're more about the grift than the legal system.

(OT: I suspect this means that The Reclaim party will have an MP soon, given that they're the ones behind Bad Law Project.)
(Right up until the next election)

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by Millennie Al » Sat Feb 04, 2023 2:38 am

IvanV wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 11:18 am
Millennie Al wrote:
Thu Feb 02, 2023 11:55 pm
IvanV wrote:
Thu Feb 02, 2023 11:36 am
In the US, they still have defamation laws, but much harder to win a case, and on top the clever wrinkle that public figures have to pass an even higher test to win a case. That seems to avoid the abuse of them we get here, while still retaining some kind of defamation back-stop.
Really? Does an ordinary person have a realistic chance of taking and winning a defamation case in the USA against a rich opponent? Over here, the cost of taking action is prohibitive. For ordinary people that means having to use a Conditional Fee Agreement, which than also means that there are limits on what you can do (since you're not paying for it, the payer is nervous about losing a lot of money and does not wan to take too many risks).

And, of course, the (civil) legal system in the USA is hugely defective, leading to many defendants simply paying compensation even when the claim is unlikely to win, because of the costs incurred by letting it get to court.
Libel abuse, which you don't like, is generally the rich suing the less rich. So I'm not sure why a point about the less rich suing the rich is relevant to what worries you.
That comment was on the US legal system in general. It is so defective it would be unwise to try to learn much from it.
You argued for no libel laws at all, to prevent libel abuse. So I'm not sure why it should concern you if it was impossible for the less rich to sue the rich.
It's not a good thing if abuse can only be perpetrated by the rich against the less rich. The solution is not to allow equal abuse by all, but to prevent the abuse completely.
But perhaps you are making the point, why have any defamation backstop at all if it is useless. But, as you yourself point out, in fact the rich get a lot of suits, which it is frequently cheaper for them to settle than fight, because you don't get awarded costs if you successfully defend a civil suit in the US. I agree with you that is a flaw in the US legal system. So, despite it being difficult to win libel suits in the US, there is some evidence of the powerful having to be careful about not defaming people, for all that freedom of speech is so much more protected in the US.
The situationb with regard to costs means that your worry is not to avoid defaming anyone because defending a meritless case against you is also very expensive. You need to avoid being sued. That's why Americans are so obsessed with suing people. And why they have a reputation for paying out in the face of meritless allegations (not specifically for libel , but for things like personal injury) though many have realised that getting a reputation for paying off false allegations makes them an attractive target for more.
The most prominent defamation cases in the US, at least from my view here the other side of the pond, recently all involve a very rich person being sued:

-Vernon Unsworth, cave diver, sued Elon Musk for being called a pedo. Musk won, successfully defending himself on the grounds that what he said was just invective. I was disappointed, but probably because of my attitude to Musk rather than the merits of his defence. On reflection, it seems clear it was invective rather than Musk being in possession of any evidence. In view of his defence, it would have been much cheaper for Musk to settle, while giving Unsworth satisfactory optics at the outcome. But Musk being Musk, maybe he wouldn't settle.
Not evidence of libel being useful. Pretty much everyone had already formed an opinion before the lawsuit and didn't change afterwards.
-Johnny Depp suing Amber Heard, and winning. So it is possible to win a case against a rich person, although the plaintiff was also very rich. A very interesting and unusual outcome in that Depp won in Virginia having lost in London, when the latter is generally so much more plaintiff friendly. Though in fact Heard appealed, and that was settled with Heard paying much smaller damages than was first awarded. So probably Depp felt there was a risk of losing the appeal, and taking a smaller settlement still left satisfactory optics for him. He got 2 goes at this, which is normally not available, because he sued a newspaper rather than Heard herself in London - Heard was only a witness in that case.
Not evidence of libel being useful. If libel is supposed to decide the truth, it's pretty disastrous to get opposite judgements in different jurisdictions. And, of course, these cases would never have been brought if the parties were not so very wealthy. Why should there be special laws for the rich that are inaccessible to almost everyone of modest means?
-Chess player Niemann suing Carlsen and others for being accused of cheating. No informed commentators expect Niemann to get very far with this, as his case seems weak in legal terms. Also, Carlsen may well be successful in arguing that Niemann himself is sufficient of a public figure to have to show "actual malice", which makes it even harder. So maybe Niemann's action is more about publicity and causing a nuisance. The statement of case reads more like a press release than a typical statement of case. The choice of jurisdiction - Missouri, where the controversial game was played rather than being the most sensible and obvious jurisdiction - is consistent with that. The fact Niemann can bring a case like this at all against super-wealthy Carlsen suggests that 19-yr-old Niemann might be worth a bob or two himself already, which is interesting.
As far as I can tell, the allegations of cheating are sinceely held beliefs of wrongdoing. As such, if they can be suppressed by libel laws, then laws are very wrong. Very many cases of wrongdoing can only be proven by starting with an allegation which the person making cannot themselves prove.
Though all of these are such unusual and individual cases, I'm not sure we can deduce very much from it.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by Millennie Al » Sat Feb 04, 2023 2:43 am

dyqik wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 4:53 pm
It's worth noting that the rich defaming the less rich in the US has real violent outcomes. Alex Jones' attacks on the Sandy Hook parents resulted in graves of their children being disturbed, armed persons outside their houses threatening them, etc.

Trump's and other's claims about children's hospitals force children to undergo gender reassignment resulted in bomb threats, possible bomb attempts, and armed protesters threatening doctors. The recent attempts at inciting trans panics and Q-Anon nonsense has also resulted in armed invasions of homes, businesses and public buildings, including actual mass-shootings.

Under Millennie Al's regime, there would be no civil legal comeback for causing or inciting these terrorist attacks, and almost no options for criminal cases against the inciters, because they were not directly involved in planning the attacks.
What successful libel lawsuits have been taken against any of these people? I only know of Alex Jones, who seems to have had default judgements against him because he refused to properly engage with the legal process.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by Gfamily » Sat Feb 04, 2023 10:28 am

Millennie Al wrote:
Sat Feb 04, 2023 2:38 am
It's not a good thing if abuse can only be perpetrated by the rich against the less rich. The solution is not to allow equal abuse by all, but to prevent the abuse completely.
If you replace the word 'abuse' with the word 'remedy' you get a better description of the problem with libel, and a better idea of why your proposal is bobbins.
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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by noggins » Mon Feb 06, 2023 8:37 am

Hasn’t Musk opened the door for the entire planet to call him a pedo without fear of being sued for libel or slander?

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by IvanV » Mon Feb 06, 2023 12:57 pm

noggins wrote:
Mon Feb 06, 2023 8:37 am
Hasn’t Musk opened the door for the entire planet to call him a pedo without fear of being sued for libel or slander?
It still wouldn't be a good idea if you put it alongside some sober explanations why it would be reasonable to believe it as fact.

But he has also opened the door for anyone to say that you can't believe anything he says. Because that is what he has just admitted as part of his successful defence in a stock fraud trial. That was over the tweet that he was taking Tesla private at $420 a share. His acquittal in that case means we can't call him a fraudster. At least not if we present it as fact. But maybe we can just call him that anyway and say it is just invective?

Pedo, fraudster, just rude names you can call people? Or only one of them? Or Only In America?

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by jimbob » Mon Feb 06, 2023 2:19 pm

IvanV wrote:
Mon Feb 06, 2023 12:57 pm
noggins wrote:
Mon Feb 06, 2023 8:37 am
Hasn’t Musk opened the door for the entire planet to call him a pedo without fear of being sued for libel or slander?
It still wouldn't be a good idea if you put it alongside some sober explanations why it would be reasonable to believe it as fact.

But he has also opened the door for anyone to say that you can't believe anything he says. Because that is what he has just admitted as part of his successful defence in a stock fraud
trial. That was over the tweet that he was taking Tesla private at $420 a share. His acquittal in that case means we can't call him a fraudster. At least not if we present it as fact. But maybe we can just call him that anyway and say it is just invective?

Pedo, fraudster, just rude names you can call people? Or only one of them? Or Only In America?

I really don't understand many US court decisions.

Several involving Musk.
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by IvanV » Thu Feb 29, 2024 5:49 pm

IvanV wrote:
Fri Feb 03, 2023 5:58 pm
In other libel news, I've only just noticed this rather delicious story from last week.

Andrew Bridgen MP, who had the Tory whip withdrawn for something along the lines of comparing Covid vaccination to the Holocaust, has issued a letter before action in libel to Matt Hancock, after asking for and failing to get a retraction from him. Hancock described him as anti-semitic and anti-vax in a tweet. For avoidance of doubt, Bridgen objects to both descriptions.

Bridgen's action is supported by the Bad Law Project, a right wing group, who seem to lack a functioning irony detector.
I've been wondering for some time whether there would be any further entertainment arising from this story, or if it had been quietly dropped. But by random chance I saw a link to this story in the Asby Nub News reporting that Bridgen and Hancock will have their day in court tomorrow. There's even a link for a live feed if you apply before 9am tomorrow, if you have nothing better to do.

Bridgen was a Reclaim MP for just 7 months, but resigned from that party in December over a "difference in direction". That sounds like a hand-wave to cover up exposing the true reason. I wonder if even Reclaim realised they couldn't have someone like him representing them.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by IvanV » Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:56 am

In libel news, Richard III is defamatory, rules a judge, in an initial hearing to determine whether a case can go ahead. But Shakespeare is not the defendant. It's the film about digging up Richard III's body in a car park, not the play.

An academic is suing because he is portrayed unsympathetically in the film. This raises a similar case to the Baby Reindeer case being litigated in California. In the Richard III case, a character in a film, precisely identified as a real person, is made to look bad, the judge agrees. The film company says that the film is a fictionalisation of real life, and tells the story from the point of view of another character, and the film represents her opinion. They also denied that they had presented the fictional character as misogynistic, etc, as claimed. Well, I suppose they will get to try out the "reasonable opinion" defence in the main trial, that wasn't the issue in this initial hearing. This would have been about whether the character in the film is reasonably identifiable as the real person of the same name, and whether it was defamatory of him. The judge didn't accept the fictionalisation argument in accepting identification, and found it defamatory.

The Baby Reindeer case seems to be, and I haven't followed it carefully, a bit more tenuous. I think the person who is suing is not directly identified as the person in the film. And I think the film is claimed rather more strongly to be a fiction with some limited basis in real events, rather than a fictionalisation of those real life. I think the claimant will have a harder job showing identification here. I don't think the press identified her, rather she came forward. She claims that some people at least would have identified her, and I have no idea about that. Then clearly there will be a debate as to what extent the film is fiction or a defamatory portrayal. If Musk can call people pedos and get away with it in the US, I would think this case would have little chance. But then Depp won his case in the US having lost it in London.

In other libel news, there was an initial hearing a couple of months ago in the Bridgen - Hancock case. Hancock was attempting to have the action struck out. Hancock partially succeeded. The judge struck out part of the case, and Bridgen has to pay £40k costs to Hancock in respect of the part struck out. The rest of the case can proceed to give us entertainment later in the year. There is an entertaining letter on the subject of Bridgen in this week's Private Eye, showing that some people believe what Bridgen says.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by snoozeofreason » Mon Jun 17, 2024 12:28 pm

IvanV wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:56 am
In other libel news, there was an initial hearing a couple of months ago in the Bridgen - Hancock case. Hancock was attempting to have the action struck out. Hancock partially succeeded. The judge struck out part of the case, and Bridgen has to pay £40k costs to Hancock in respect of the part struck out. The rest of the case can proceed to give us entertainment later in the year. There is an entertaining letter on the subject of Bridgen in this week's Private Eye, showing that some people believe what Bridgen says.
On a slight tangent, Bridgen is one of the MPs who comes out well from the Horizon scandal. Ten years ago, he actively came to the defence of a sub-postmaster constituent who had been caught up in it, was quick to denounce the mediation scheme then underway as a sham, and recognised that Second Sight had, in his own words, “Proven to be far too independent,” for the liking of the Post Office.

Maybe the thing to remember about conspiracy theorists is that sometimes there really is a conspiracy.
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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by jimbob » Mon Jun 17, 2024 3:28 pm

IvanV wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:56 am


The Baby Reindeer case seems to be, and I haven't followed it carefully, a bit more tenuous. I think the person who is suing is not directly identified as the person in the film. And I think the film is claimed rather more strongly to be a fiction with some limited basis in real events, rather than a fictionalisation of those real life. I think the claimant will have a harder job showing identification here. I don't think the press identified her, rather she came forward. She claims that some people at least would have identified her, and I have no idea about that. Then clearly there will be a debate as to what extent the film is fiction or a defamatory portrayal. If Musk can call people pedos and get away with it in the US, I would think this case would have little chance. But then Depp won his case in the US having lost it in London.

In this, he didn't identify her, but he used social media posts from her, which uniquely identified her, so it's pretty clear who he was talking about. So I'd say that is a very thin veil of deniability.
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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by bob sterman » Mon Jun 17, 2024 3:50 pm

jimbob wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 3:28 pm
IvanV wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:56 am
The Baby Reindeer case seems to be, and I haven't followed it carefully, a bit more tenuous. I think the person who is suing is not directly identified as the person in the film. And I think the film is claimed rather more strongly to be a fiction with some limited basis in real events, rather than a fictionalisation of those real life. I think the claimant will have a harder job showing identification here. I don't think the press identified her, rather she came forward. She claims that some people at least would have identified her, and I have no idea about that. Then clearly there will be a debate as to what extent the film is fiction or a defamatory portrayal. If Musk can call people pedos and get away with it in the US, I would think this case would have little chance. But then Depp won his case in the US having lost it in London.
In this, he didn't identify her, but he used social media posts from her, which uniquely identified her, so it's pretty clear who he was talking about. So I'd say that is a very thin veil of deniability.
I think the test is whether a "reasonable person" could identify her. And a bunch of people did manage to identify her quite easily before she came forward. Her name - and social media account details - were being circulated on discussion forums / gossip sites before she came forward. So it's pretty clear that she was identifiable - I guess the defence team could dispute that the people who managed to work out who she was were "reasonable people".

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by Gfamily » Mon Jun 17, 2024 4:05 pm

jimbob wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 3:28 pm
IvanV wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:56 am


The Baby Reindeer case seems to be, and I haven't followed it carefully, a bit more tenuous. I think the person who is suing is not directly identified as the person in the film. And I think the film is claimed rather more strongly to be a fiction with some limited basis in real events, rather than a fictionalisation of those real life. I think the claimant will have a harder job showing identification here. I don't think the press identified her, rather she came forward. She claims that some people at least would have identified her, and I have no idea about that. Then clearly there will be a debate as to what extent the film is fiction or a defamatory portrayal. If Musk can call people pedos and get away with it in the US, I would think this case would have little chance. But then Depp won his case in the US having lost it in London.

In this, he didn't identify her, but he used social media posts from her, which uniquely identified her, so it's pretty clear who he was talking about. So I'd say that is a very thin veil of deniability.
There's an episode* of the The Rest Is Entertainment" podcast that covers the world of problems that Netflix have brought upon themselves by not taking the issue of defamation seriously.

* also available elsewhere
Richard Osman and Marina Hyde - make a very good team, with his inside knowledge of the things that producers should consider, and her knowledge of everything else.
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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by jimbob » Mon Jun 17, 2024 4:22 pm

Gfamily wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 4:05 pm
jimbob wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 3:28 pm
IvanV wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:56 am


The Baby Reindeer case seems to be, and I haven't followed it carefully, a bit more tenuous. I think the person who is suing is not directly identified as the person in the film. And I think the film is claimed rather more strongly to be a fiction with some limited basis in real events, rather than a fictionalisation of those real life. I think the claimant will have a harder job showing identification here. I don't think the press identified her, rather she came forward. She claims that some people at least would have identified her, and I have no idea about that. Then clearly there will be a debate as to what extent the film is fiction or a defamatory portrayal. If Musk can call people pedos and get away with it in the US, I would think this case would have little chance. But then Depp won his case in the US having lost it in London.

In this, he didn't identify her, but he used social media posts from her, which uniquely identified her, so it's pretty clear who he was talking about. So I'd say that is a very thin veil of deniability.
There's an episode* of the The Rest Is Entertainment" podcast that covers the world of problems that Netflix have brought upon themselves by not taking the issue of defamation seriously.

* also available elsewhere
Richard Osman and Marina Hyde - make a very good team, with his inside knowledge of the things that producers should consider, and her knowledge of everything else.
I read her talking about it in the guardian.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... -interview
It tells Gadd’s story of being stalked, as well as his abuse at the hands of an exploitative TV figure, and is prefaced with the words: “This is a true story”. Not “based on a true story”, or “inspired by real events”, or all the other get-outs / get-ins that have made “based-on” crime an intellectual property genre all of its own, with Netflix particularly drawn to the tag.
Which I think, with the ease of identifying her, means I can't even see a "fictionalisation" defence.


Later, she discusses the compliance department at Netflix.

bob sterman wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 3:50 pm
jimbob wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 3:28 pm
IvanV wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 8:56 am
The Baby Reindeer case seems to be, and I haven't followed it carefully, a bit more tenuous. I think the person who is suing is not directly identified as the person in the film. And I think the film is claimed rather more strongly to be a fiction with some limited basis in real events, rather than a fictionalisation of those real life. I think the claimant will have a harder job showing identification here. I don't think the press identified her, rather she came forward. She claims that some people at least would have identified her, and I have no idea about that. Then clearly there will be a debate as to what extent the film is fiction or a defamatory portrayal. If Musk can call people pedos and get away with it in the US, I would think this case would have little chance. But then Depp won his case in the US having lost it in London.
In this, he didn't identify her, but he used social media posts from her, which uniquely identified her, so it's pretty clear who he was talking about. So I'd say that is a very thin veil of deniability.
I think the test is whether a "reasonable person" could identify her. And a bunch of people did manage to identify her quite easily before she came forward. Her name - and social media account details - were being circulated on discussion forums / gossip sites before she came forward. So it's pretty clear that she was identifiable - I guess the defence team could dispute that the people who managed to work out who she was were "reasonable people".
Indeed
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

IvanV
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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by IvanV » Mon Jun 17, 2024 5:00 pm

jimbob wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2024 4:22 pm
I read her talking about it in the guardian.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... -interview

Which I think, with the ease of identifying her, means I can't even see a "fictionalisation" defence.


Later, she discusses the compliance department at Netflix.
Thank you all for filling out my clearly very limited understanding of this case. I suspect I interpreted it in my head to adjust it to people behaving with some slight common sense.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by Stranger Mouse » Tue Jun 18, 2024 4:17 pm

A £75 thousand slice of humble pie for Joey Barton

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/h ... 64568.html
I’ve decided I should be on the pardon list if that’s still in the works

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by noggins » Wed Jun 19, 2024 2:59 pm

Nitpick: Musk got away with 'pedo' by successfully arguing it was low abuse rather than an accusation.


Seems fictionalisation of trauma has a catch-22.

f you stick to the facts, you identify the harmer.

If you dont, fuckwits misidentify them and wholly innocent people suffer.

If you ficitonalise a bit, your harmer is identifiable and then tries to sue you for the bits you changed.

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Re: Rights and wrongs of UK libel laws

Post by dyqik » Wed Jun 19, 2024 8:49 pm

noggins wrote:
Wed Jun 19, 2024 2:59 pm
Nitpick: Musk got away with 'pedo' by successfully arguing it was low abuse rather than an accusation.


Seems fictionalisation of trauma has a catch-22.

f you stick to the facts, you identify the harmer.

If you dont, fuckwits misidentify them and wholly innocent people suffer.

If you ficitonalise a bit, your harmer is identifiable and then tries to sue you for the bits you changed.
That's not a real Catch-22 though, because there's no draft that requires you to fictionalize trauma under penalty of law. You can always take the Wargames route out.

"The only winning move is not to play"

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