Legal Implications of Blogging
The Blogbook has a link to an article by Pejman Yousefzadeh at TCS (Tech Central Station) on the legal implications of blogging entitled “The Next Litigation Battleground” (see also his blog, Pejmanesque). The article was also picked up by The Blog Herald.
Generally instructive on this specific topic of internet libel is a posting by Eugene Volokh on the decision of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in the Batzel case, rehearing denied, involving an interpretation of 47 U.S.C. § 230 (section 230).
See in this connection my lengthy posting on libel slander defamation and blogs where it is discussed that bloggers should be careful about what they post or allow as comments on their blog pages until the blogger liability issue is firmly settled in the law.
Since the issue of blogger liability is very important, below is a list of blog links about internet libel:
1. via Instapundit – update here – to the Kausfiles and an October 28, 2003 article entitled “The Case Against Editors: Why it still pays to not have one” which points to a posting by Eugene Volokh discussing the difference between libel and slander, who further links to his own May 12, 2002 article in TCS entitled “The Future of Internet Speech“, which points out that 1st Amendment rights to free speech under the US Constitution have limits and are supplemented by the laws of the various states (e.g. on such issues as retraction).
2. Howard Bashman, in How Appealing links to other blog sites commenting on libel, and comments the 9th Circuit decision in Batzel, including the dissent, which raises serious legal issues. See the dissent of Judge Ronald Gould at dissent from denial of rehearing en banc in Batzel v. Cramers. Marty Lederman at SCOTUS links to this dissent for another “historical” reason – the citing of law blogs (blawgs) in a judicial opinion.
3. A Small Victory has some interesting mostly non-legal comment on the libel issue.