From the wires to wireless: how mass communications technologies have affected the libel/slander distinction, single publication, and liability in defamation law Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
Creator
  • Beattie, Kirsten M.
    • Affiliation: Hussman School of Journalism and Media
Abstract
  • This research examined how courts have addressed the application of defamation law to new mass communications technologies—the telegraph, radio, and television—to contextualize the current application to the Internet. Three areas of defamation law were examined—the libel/slander distinction, the single publication rule, and liability. Through analyzing federal and state court cases, as well as relevant statutes, this thesis attempted to determine the extent to which our current approach to applying defamation law to the Internet fits into a historical pattern. Among the findings were that the application of the libel/slander distinction and the single publication rule to the Internet is consistent with common law developments that have arisen from other technologies; that for each technology, courts initially struggled to determine the appropriate liability to apply; and that statutes historically have played an integral role in the common law approach to liability for technologies.
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  • In Copyright
Advisor
  • Walden, Ruth C.
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