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Forum	  Selection	  in	       Social	  Media	       Bill	  Loving,	  Brady	  Teufel	                               Journal...
Def:	  libel	  A	  false	  and	  unprivileged	  statement	  of	  fact	  that	  is	  harmful	  to	  someones	  reputaAon.	  
  “The	  individual’s	  right	  to	                                               the	  protec5on	  of	  his	  own	      ...
What	  forms	  does	  libel	  take?	  
•	  Written/printed	  words	  	  	  	  	  	  	  •	  Pictures	  
 To	  recover	  against	  someone	  who	  has	  libeled	  you,	  you	  must	  prove	  that	  a	  false	  statement	  was:	...
WWW….	  	  The	  Internet	  provides	  us	  with	  an	  unprecedented	  ability	  and	  an	  enArely	  new	  plaNorm	  to	...
"Communica5on	  on	  the	  Internet	  is	  instantaneous,	  seamless,	  interac5ve,	  blunt,	  borderless	  and	  far-­‐re...
Social	  Networks	  	  Nowhere	  on	  the	  Internet	  are	  these	  characterisAcs	  more	  prevalent	  than	  on	  socia...
How	  fast	  are	  social	  networks	  growing?	  
How	  fast	  is	  social	  media	  growing?	              Source:	  Huffington	  Post	  
How	  fast	  is	  social	  media	  growing?	              Source:	  Huffington	  Post	  
How	  fast	  is	  social	  media	  growing?	                          Source:	  Huffington	  Post	  
How	  fast	  is	  social	  media	  growing?	              Source:	  Huffington	  Post	  
How	  fast	  is	  social	  media	  growing?	              Source:	  Huffington	  Post	  
How	  fast	  is	  social	  media	  growing?	              Source:	  Huffington	  Post	  
One-­‐click	  libel	  	  The	  ease	  with	  which	  those	  engaged	  in	  everyday	  civic	  discourse	  can	  libel	  o...
"As	  the	  Internet	  turns	  more	  ordinary	  John	  Does	  into	  publishers,	  it	  is	  also	  turning	  them	  into...
"Virtual	  reputational	                                         economies	  show	  that	                                 ...
But,	  the	  law	  does	  not	  agree.	  
Though	  libels	  are	  easier	  to	  commit,	  remedies	  are	  harder	  to	  obtain.	  	  Despite	  making	  it	  easier...
Pennoyer	  vs.	  Neff	  	  Decision:	  JurisdicAon	  requires	  that	  the	  defendant	  physically	  be	  in	  the	  foru...
International	  Shoe,	  Worldwide	  Volkswagen,	  Burger	  King	  	  Decision:	  The	  defendant	  must	  have	  sufficient	...
Calder	  vs.	  Jones	  	  Decision:	  When	  the	  conduct	  is	  directed	  to	  the	  plainAffs	  home	  state,	  jurisdi...
Revell	  vs.	  Lidov	  	  Decision:	  Without	  sufficient	  minimum	  contacts,	  there	  can	  be	  no	  jurisdicAon	  
Shielding	  those	  who	  libel	  others	  behind	  an	  outdated	  application	  of	  minimum	  contact	  provides	  a	  ...
The	  libeler	  who	  uses	  social	  media	  to	  Sire	  defamatory	  statements	  onto	  the	  Internet	  should	  be	  ...
 Bring	  the	  Internet	  libeler	  into	  the	  court	  where	  the	  natural	  and	  probable	  consequences	  of	  the	...
 In	  order	  to	  help	  provide	  balance,	  the	  authors	  suggest	  that	  plaintiffs	  be	  required	  to	  meet	  t...
malice	  Def:	  Actual	  Malice	  	  PublicaAon	  with	  knowledge	  of	  falsity	  or	  reckless	  disregard	  of	  the	 ...
The	  Sive	  elements	  of	  Actual	  Malice:	  	  	  •	  Publication	  •	  IdentiSication	  •	  Defamation	  •	  Damage	 ...
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Forum Selection in Social Media


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Paper presentation at the International Organization for Social Science and Behavioral Research Conference (11/18/11).

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Forum Selection in Social Media

  1. 1. Forum  Selection  in   Social  Media   Bill  Loving,  Brady  Teufel   Journalism  Department   California  Polytechnic  State  University  
  2. 2. Def:  libel  A  false  and  unprivileged  statement  of  fact  that  is  harmful  to  someones  reputaAon.  
  3. 3.   “The  individual’s  right  to   the  protec5on  of  his  own   good  name  reflects  no   more  than  our  basic   concept  of  the  essen5al  What’s  the  value  of  a   dignity  and  worth  of  every  reputation?   human  being—a  concept   at  the  root  of  any  decent   system  of  ordered  liberty.”       -­‐  Gertz  vs.  Robert  Welch,  Inc.  
  4. 4. What  forms  does  libel  take?  
  5. 5. •  Written/printed  words              •  Pictures  
  6. 6.  To  recover  against  someone  who  has  libeled  you,  you  must  prove  that  a  false  statement  was:    •  About  you  specifically    •  Defamatory:  that  is,  it  harmed  your    reputaAon  (as  opposed  to  being  just  offensive  or  insulAng)    •  Published  to  at  least  one  other  person    •  Made  with  some  degree  of  fault    
  7. 7. WWW….    The  Internet  provides  us  with  an  unprecedented  ability  and  an  enArely  new  plaNorm  to  publish  informaAon.  
  8. 8. "Communica5on  on  the  Internet  is  instantaneous,  seamless,  interac5ve,  blunt,  borderless  and  far-­‐reaching.  It  is  also  impersonal,  and  the  anonymous  nature  of  such  communica5ons  may  itself  create  a  greater  risk  that  the  defamatory  remarks  are  believed.”  -­‐  Vaquero  Energy  Ltd.  vs.  Weir    
  9. 9. Social  Networks    Nowhere  on  the  Internet  are  these  characterisAcs  more  prevalent  than  on  social  networks  -­‐-­‐  the  informaAon  exchanges  of  the  21st  century.  
  10. 10. How  fast  are  social  networks  growing?  
  11. 11. How  fast  is  social  media  growing?   Source:  Huffington  Post  
  12. 12. How  fast  is  social  media  growing?   Source:  Huffington  Post  
  13. 13. How  fast  is  social  media  growing?   Source:  Huffington  Post  
  14. 14. How  fast  is  social  media  growing?   Source:  Huffington  Post  
  15. 15. How  fast  is  social  media  growing?   Source:  Huffington  Post  
  16. 16. How  fast  is  social  media  growing?   Source:  Huffington  Post  
  17. 17. One-­‐click  libel    The  ease  with  which  those  engaged  in  everyday  civic  discourse  can  libel  one  another  has  reached  new  heights.  
  18. 18. "As  the  Internet  turns  more  ordinary  John  Does  into  publishers,  it  is  also  turning  them  into  defamation  defendants."      -­‐  Lydsky,  Duke  Law  Journal    
  19. 19. "Virtual  reputational   economies  show  that   reputation  can  be  gained,   lost,  traded,  protected,  and   shared,  all  in  property-­like   fashion,  without  regard  to   whether  it  has   independent  economic  Time  to  re-­examine   value.  In  other  words,  the  legal  value  of  a   reputation  is  not  merely   valuable;  it  is  the  new  New  reputation?   Property."           -­‐  Joseph  Blocher,  The  Yale  Law  Journal    
  20. 20. But,  the  law  does  not  agree.  
  21. 21. Though  libels  are  easier  to  commit,  remedies  are  harder  to  obtain.    Despite  making  it  easier  then  ever  to  damage  others  reputaAons  via  social  networks,  the  Internet  provides  a  legal  shield  for  torNeasers  based  on  outdated  precedents.  
  22. 22. Pennoyer  vs.  Neff    Decision:  JurisdicAon  requires  that  the  defendant  physically  be  in  the  forum.  
  23. 23. International  Shoe,  Worldwide  Volkswagen,  Burger  King    Decision:  The  defendant  must  have  sufficient  minimum  contacts  in  the  forum  before  jurisdicAon  can  aXach.  
  24. 24. Calder  vs.  Jones    Decision:  When  the  conduct  is  directed  to  the  plainAffs  home  state,  jurisdicAon  aXaches  
  25. 25. Revell  vs.  Lidov    Decision:  Without  sufficient  minimum  contacts,  there  can  be  no  jurisdicAon  
  26. 26. Shielding  those  who  libel  others  behind  an  outdated  application  of  minimum  contact  provides  a  safe  haven  for  wrongdoers.  
  27. 27. The  libeler  who  uses  social  media  to  Sire  defamatory  statements  onto  the  Internet  should  be  haled  into  court  in  the  state  where  his  barb  Sinds  his  victim.    
  28. 28.  Bring  the  Internet  libeler  into  the  court  where  the  natural  and  probable  consequences  of  the  publication  occur    …  the  plaintiff’s  home.  
  29. 29.  In  order  to  help  provide  balance,  the  authors  suggest  that  plaintiffs  be  required  to  meet  the  actual  malice  standard  as  the  fault  element  of  their  libel  suits.      
  30. 30. malice  Def:  Actual  Malice    PublicaAon  with  knowledge  of  falsity  or  reckless  disregard  of  the  probable  falsity  of  the  publicaAon.    
  31. 31. The  Sive  elements  of  Actual  Malice:      •  Publication  •  IdentiSication  •  Defamation  •  Damage  •  Fault      Plaintiffs  must  establish  all  Sive  elements  in  order  to  prevail.