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View Diary: Sandra Fluke rejects Rush Limbaugh's nopology, says she'd 'rather not' have a personal call from him (143 comments)

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  •  just a little tweak: (5+ / 0-)

    slander is what is done over the back fence, or in a small community of people when you call someone a slut.  libel is
    what is done when you do over it across a major organ of communications: the nyt's, cbs, or the am radio.

    WHY IS IT EASIER TO BELIEVE THAT 150,000,000 AMERICANS ARE BEING LAZY, RATHER THAN THAT 400 ARE BEING GREEDY?

    by doesnotworkorplaywellwithothers on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 02:33:46 PM PST

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    •  Not quite. (6+ / 0-)

      Slander is oral/spoken defamation

      Libel is written/"viewable" defamation

      "The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed." ~ Steven Biko

      by Marjmar on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 02:40:37 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  exactly. slander is done over the back fence (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        blue aardvark

        or over the cubicle wall, where there is no record.  it is merely heard and passed along in a transitory manner.  

        what limbaugh did is libel: if you walk away from fox news while it is spewing forth lies about someone, and thus you don't see it, it is still libel, not slander because of the range of the statement, and therefore non-transitory nature of the statement.  there is nothing these days that makes a printed newspaper less transitory than a radio or television program.

        i worked on a famous case, westmoreland v. cbs television where the general sued over a mike wallace television program about the lies and deceptions during the vietname era: it was a libel suit as was the suit closely connected with it, nyt v. sullivan.

        it's a question of the range which the words have.  previous to the era of telecommunications, the apoken word did not have the range or permanency of the written word.  now they do.

        where fluke is going to have it easy is that it will be self-evident that words like 'slut' and 'whore' were intended with malice and an intent to defame.

        WHY IS IT EASIER TO BELIEVE THAT 150,000,000 AMERICANS ARE BEING LAZY, RATHER THAN THAT 400 ARE BEING GREEDY?

        by doesnotworkorplaywellwithothers on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 03:05:15 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  :::sigh::: (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Timaeus, rubyr

          I believe you're very incorrect, but I'll leave you to it.

          "The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed." ~ Steven Biko

          by Marjmar on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 03:10:20 PM PST

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        •  I believe the 2nd offensive word was 'prostitute' (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Marjmar

          not whore.

          If you do not believe that there is an ongoing war on women, then you aren't paying attention. h/t The Pootie Potentate

          by glorificus on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 03:42:22 PM PST

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        •  No, you're just plain wrong. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LibertySon

          As said above, there are two kinds of defamation: slander and libel.

          Slander is spoken; libel is written.

          That's the only distinction.

          I'm a lawyer.  I'm not just making this up, as you seem to be doing.

          •  Ooops, this is wrong, as Journeyman points out. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Marjmar

            I wish I had been a little less pompous in uttering the untruth.

            •  i am not making it up either. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Timaeus

              the definition that slander is spoken and libel is printed is an old one which no longer strictly holds. it is based not on the meaningless distinction of written or oral, but on basis of range,  back in the day when the written word had greater range and permanency than the transitory spoken word.

              the fact that the spoken word was transitory occasioned an entirely different set of proofs/evidence because there was no record.  thus a telephone call may still be the instrument of slander, but a nat'l radio program, no.

              i'm interested: why would you be convinced by another comment, but not mine?

              WHY IS IT EASIER TO BELIEVE THAT 150,000,000 AMERICANS ARE BEING LAZY, RATHER THAN THAT 400 ARE BEING GREEDY?

              by doesnotworkorplaywellwithothers on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 04:52:24 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Very simple. I had the oral/written (1+ / 0-)

                distinction hard-wired, and I was so sure that was correct that I didn't bother to check, even though it only took a 10-second google search to show that you were right.  (I did that after I saw journeyman's post.)  Somehow I just never learned that defamatory radio and other broadcasts are characterized as libel. Sorry.

                •  oh no problem, i just wondered. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Timaeus

                  if your law degree is from some time back it's understandable.  

                  Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure thaat you are not, in fact, surrounded by a-holes - William Gibson.

                  by doesnotworkorplaywellwithothers on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 05:35:19 PM PST

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                  •  Those on-line degrees (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Timaeus

                    are such a waste, doncha know. Where the hell are the Cliff Notes, anyway?

                    We old farts have to stick together, even if those times, they are a changing . . .

                    {{{Shrugs and hobbles to the liquor cabinet screaming "Get off my lawn."}}}

                    Could we just agree that Rush is a slime-sucking neanderthal that makes shit up?????

      •  Actually, broadcast is apparently the legal (8+ / 0-)

        equivalent of published.  And so this is libel.  Moreover, the transcripts have been published thus making it a clear case of the more serious crime of libel.  At least as I understand it.  But I should note that I'm not a lawyer, I'm just a guy that likes looking stuff up.  So for what it's worth, here's what Wikipedia has to say:

        Defamation—also called calumny, vilification, traducement, slander (for transitory statements), and libel (for written, broadcast, or otherwise published words)—is the communication of a statement that makes a claim, expressly stated or implied to be factual, that may give an individual, business, product, group, government, or nation a negative image. This can be also any disparaging statement made by one person about another, which is communicated or published. It is usually a requirement that this claim be false and that the publication is communicated to someone other than the person defamed (the claimant).

        Ceterum censeo Factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

        by journeyman on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 03:11:27 PM PST

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        •  Thanks for the clarification. (4+ / 0-)

          Somehow it missed my attention is decades of law practice that defamation by radio broadcast is considered libel.

          Learn something new every day.

          Incidentally--and maybe I'm wrong about this too--but I don't think it really matters very much whether an act of defamation is characterized as slander or libel.

          •  I'm not the one to ask about this. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Eric Nelson

            Like I said, I just like to look things up, but I think libel is, legally speaking, more serious than slander.  That said, you are absolutely correct that defamation is defamation.

            Ceterum censeo Factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

            by journeyman on Mon Mar 05, 2012 at 06:23:47 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

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