Companies will try anything to get the attention of their audience, and in today’s Digital Age, that can include, according to a recent defamation lawsuit’s allegations, utilizing various user names to post comments on their own blog posts.
The blog post involved in the current lawsuit was posted on Jezebel and pertained to another defamation lawsuit filed by Meanith Huon against Above the Law for how it reported his acquittal from accusations of sexual assault. The comments section of the Jezebel article included an allegation that, despite his acquittal, Huon was still a rapist and should be referred to as such. Huon denies these allegations and contends they are defamatory.
Huon responded by filing a second defamation lawsuit, this time against Jezebel for the blog post, its headline, as well as some of the statements that were made in the post’s comments section which he claims are false.
Because bloggers only have limited control over the comments that get posted on their websites, and because the point of the comments is to promote free and open discussion, they are protected. The comments themselves are protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and the Communications Decency Act protects online publishers from allegations of defamation when it comes to comments posted on their site by third-party users. Continue reading