HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » Libel laws are too weak

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 11:11 PM

 

Libel laws are too weak

Everyone's freaking out over Trump saying libel laws are too weak.

Frankly, if libel laws were stronger, a decent chunk of conservative media outlets would have been sued out of existence.

For example, Alex Jones got away with inciting some gun nut to shoot up a pizza place by saying "Oops, my bad!" And all the pizzagate bullshit has been harming business at that pizza place and the surrounding area because customers are afraid of exactly that happening. But it all went away because Alex said my bad. Maybe Trump, for all his bumbling has stumbled onto a point: Our libel laws are laughably weak. If you can spread a bunch of rumors about a pizza shop being a front for a child sex trafficking operation, have it snowball into a dude shooting up the place, and walk away with no material consequences because you make a half-assed apology, that's a problem.

Frankly, I hope Trump goes ahead. Because Infowars, Breitbart, etc. are going to have a lot to answer for. Mass shooting hoaxers, pizzagaters, the Gamergate crap and a whole host of libelous conspiracy theories that make up the majority of the conservative media sphere.

12 replies, 1640 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 12 replies Author Time Post
Reply Libel laws are too weak (Original post)
NCDem777 Jan 2018 OP
The Velveteen Ocelot Jan 2018 #1
Takket Jan 2018 #2
NCDem777 Jan 2018 #5
NCDem777 Jan 2018 #3
The Velveteen Ocelot Jan 2018 #4
renegade000 Jan 2018 #6
Fred Sanders Jan 2018 #7
X_Digger Jan 2018 #10
Fred Sanders Jan 2018 #11
X_Digger Jan 2018 #12
C_U_L8R Jan 2018 #8
X_Digger Jan 2018 #9

Response to NCDem777 (Original post)

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 11:15 PM

1. There's this First Amendment thing...

No, we do not want "stronger" libel laws.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 11:24 PM

2. yeah, the slander/libel laws are pretty decent

you actually have to prove harm was one by lies and i think that's about the right spot. the first amendment is important but we cannot allow innocent citizens to be harmed by weaponized words.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Takket (Reply #2)

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 11:43 PM

5. But in some states, like TX

 

the consequences can be averted if you simply issue a retraction and an apology. So if you get on a mass media outlet and say something untrue that causes an innocent person's business to be visited by a gun-wielding psychopath, you can make the resulting libel lawsuit go poof by saying you're sorry.

I think the standards are fine but the ability to get away from consequences is a way that our libel laws need touched upon.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 11:24 PM

3. Does accountability for actions

 

weaken the 1st Amendment?

Maybe it's me but routinely saying things like "the children that died in the mass shooting never existed and the parents are faking" should result in better consequences.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to NCDem777 (Reply #3)

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 11:42 PM

4. The only lawsuit I know of involving that matter is one brought by one James Tracy

who was a professor of communications at Florida Atlantic University. He was one of the "Sandy Hook truthers" who claimed that shooting never happened but was a hoax perpetrated by the government as an excuse for more gun control. This asshole harassed one of the Sandy Hook parents, demanding proof of their son's death. As a result the university fired him, even though he had tenure. He sued the university for wrongful termination, claiming they had violated his right to free speech, but a jury upheld his termination. So it looks like the law doesn't necessarily protect that sort of bullshit. It was not a defamation case but a jury evidently didn't think Tracy's free speech rights were violated by his getting fired for spreading bullshit.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to NCDem777 (Original post)

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 11:46 PM

6. Problem is...

Litigation of libel laws (or any litigation based process) skews toward favoring parties with the deeper pockets. That's going to be a slanted playing field against our side.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to NCDem777 (Original post)

Sun Jan 7, 2018, 11:46 PM

7. Incitement to hatred, in example, should not be protected free speech. Ask Germany why.

"Freedom of speech" does not mean freedom to incite, but apparently
America disagrees. Lack of strong libel laws beget Foxxx which beget Trump.

Don't all freedoms come with responsibilities and limits?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Fred Sanders (Reply #7)

Mon Jan 8, 2018, 12:56 AM

10. "Incitement to hatred" isn't a thing. Incitement has to have immediacy.

It's not incitement to say, "you totally beat up {some group of people}".

It is incitement to say, "see that guy there? *points* Go kick his ass."

And that's the way it should remain.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to X_Digger (Reply #10)

Mon Jan 8, 2018, 01:17 AM

11. You misunderstood. "Christians are vermin and should be eliminated" is what German law targets.

Hate speech is speech that targets a specific group of people for hatred, say Muslims or Jews and should be banned.

Your examples are not incitements as hate speech laws define the word, which does NOT require immediacy, just the opposite is usually the case. Your examples are not hate speech, just direct crimes.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Fred Sanders (Reply #11)

Mon Jan 8, 2018, 08:13 PM

12. And "hate speech" laws are bullshit.

Fuck that shit. Incitement has a legal meaning. "Incitement to hate" does not.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to NCDem777 (Original post)

Mon Jan 8, 2018, 12:25 AM

8. Who's more guilty of libel...

but Trump. He has some kind of malfunction that makes him blame others of his own shortcomings.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to NCDem777 (Original post)

Mon Jan 8, 2018, 12:53 AM

9. No, they're not. n/t

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread