The Truth about Truth as a Defense

MP900342030 You can be held liable for telling the truth.  That’s right.  As counter-intuitive as it sounds, it’s (for lack of a better word) true.  I mention this because, once again, I’m hearing that someone – a blogger, in this case – was held liable for reporting the truth – and everyone gets into a lather.  How can this be?  It’s a travesty of justice!

Well, technically, they’re right.  The pure definition of defamation includes a false something.  But this sometimes clashes with other laws, such as the right to privacy, also referred to as “the right to be let alone”.  After all, some truths are private.

We could argue all day about a court’s right/wrong decisions, but taking the above case as an example, they seemed to be looking at the totality of the conduct of the defendant – and the results of that conduct.

Ultimately, as the post’s author explains, this case came down to contract law.  They got the defendant on tortious interference.  We’ll see what happens on appeal.

Something to think about prior to that next gossip session at the water cooler.

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