Bloggers vs. Mayor | Online Defamation Law Suits

Posted by admin | November 25th, 2010

Phyllis Morris is the former Mayor of Aurora, she was ousted by a political newcomer, Geoff Dawe, in an election just last month. She lost by less than 4,000 votes–and she thinks the loss is attributable to three bloggers. Morris has named several residents, bloggers and commenters, in a lawsuit for online defamation–she is seeking $6 million in damages. The courts in Canada will now get to struggle with the question of whether this is free speech, defamatory speech, etc.


The case pits the rights of bloggers to freely opine against the rights of politicians to defend their reputations against online attacks, and raises the question of what constitutes fair comment in the increasingly unwieldy Internet realm, where a solitary comment may be read by millions of people worldwide.

Even the experts are unclear on where the line is between defamatory comments and free speech against political opponents. Apparently the former Mayor think that the online turmoil these bloggers and their comments caused was the sole reason for her electoral loss.


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