No Surge Of Libel Cases Yet Over Web Postings


Nashville videographer Ron Coons was accused on a MySpace Web site of drugging young women at parties. He has filed a libel suit against the person responsible for the Web posting, a state lawyer, reports the Tennessean. There are at least 60 libel cases against bloggers and others posting messages on Internet bulletin boards, says the New York-based Media Law Resource Center.

“My guess is that you won’t see a surge in Internet lawsuits because the federal law dictates that you cannot sue an actual Web site – you can only sue the originator of a post on the Web site,” said law Prof. Eugene Volokh of the University of California at Los Angeles. “The problem with suing someone who posts something on the Web is that they might not have any money, or enough to make it worthwhile,” he said. Another downside to a lawsuit because of something posted on a Web site is that “you’re calling attention to whatever was posted in the first place,” he said.


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