Sunday, January 26, 2014

Courtney Love and What's Not Defamation

In a legal case about which you can form your own parallels, singer Courtney Love was just successful in defense of an allegation that her tweet about her ex-lawyer having been "bought off" was defamatory.
"I was f***ing devestated [sic] when Rhonda J. Holmes esq. of san diego was bought off."
Love wrote it 2009. It was decided that the lawyer was a limited-purpose public figure because of her association with a celebrity, so she had to prove that Love acted with malice.

Love defended herself by saying that she thought her tweet was a private, direct message, that she deleted it as soon as she realized it was public, and that she believed the accusation at the time she made it. The Hollywood Reporter writes
Love also testified that she believed her message to be true when she sent it. That might have been the prevailing defense. The jury answered no to the question, "Did Rhonda Holmes prove by clear and convincing evidence that Courtney Love knew it was false or doubted the truth of it?"
There was no mention if Love insulted the judge, the jury, her lawyers, or the American system of jurisprudence (but being Courtney Love, she probably did at some point).

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