Skip to main content
January 2005

MediaLawLetter April 2005


pdf Download Publication


1st Amend. Seminar: Missouri HS Journalism Students Hear Press / Law Enforcement Seminar

Legislative Update: Reporters’ Privilege and FOIA

MLRC Report: The Substantial Truth Defense and Third Party Allegations


Fla. Sup. Ct.: Misappropriation Statute Does Not Apply to “Perfect Storm”
Court holds statute inapplicable to publications not promoting products or services
Tyne, et al. v. Time Warner Entertainment Co., L.P.

N.Y. App. Div.: N.Y. Appellate Div. Affirms Dismissal of Libel-in-Fiction Claim Against Primary Colors
Plaintiff librarian filed to prove fictional character was “ of and concerning” her
Carter-Clark v. Random House, Inc., et al.

Cal. Ct. App.: Actress’s Libel and False Light Claims Over Edited Comedy Sketch Proceed
Fictional sketch conveyed false impression that actress did nude scene
Burns v. MTV Networks Enterprises, Inc.

Okla. Ct. Civ. App.: $3.7 Million Libel and False Light Verdict Reversed
News website published sex offender records
Stewart v. The Oklahoma Publishing Co., et al.

Fla. Cir. Ct.: Trial Judge Dismisses Punitive Damage Claim in Pensacola News Journal Case
$18.3 million compensatory award will be appealed
Anderson Columbia Co. v. Pensacola News Journal

2d Cir.: Proof of Falsity in Defamation Action Must Be “Clear, Convincing”
Federal appeals court addresses issue left open by New York’s highest court
DiBella v. Hopkins

Minn. Ct. App.: Court Affirms Dismissal of Libel Case Under Anti-SLAPP Statute
Court held plaintiff did not provide“clear and convincing” evidence of actionable tort
Marchant Inv. & Management Co. v. St. Anthony West Neighborhood Org., Inc.

Utah: Utah Supreme Court Holds News Reporter Is a Private Figure
Decision raises important issues for media covering high-profile employees
Wayment v. Clear Channel Broadcasting, Inc.

Mich. Ct. App.: Michigan Appeals Court Affirms Summary Judgment for Rapper in False Light Action
Court holds song lyrics involving “bully” were substantially true
Bailey v. Mathers

Va.: Virginia Supreme Court Throws Out Jury Award Over Campaign Ad
No actual malice where defendant relied on information from newspaper
Jordan v. Kollman

Ill. App.: Illinois Appeals Court Holds Fair Report Privilege Defeated By Actual Malice
Court declines to follow Restatement
Solaia Technology LLC v. Specialty Pub. Co.

Ark. & Wa.: Arkansas, Washington Repeal Criminal Defamation Provisions
Statutes dealt with criminal slander; imputing unchastity to a woman

10th Cir.: Tenth Circuit to Hear Challenge to Colorado Criminal Libel Statute
Amici brief argues statute violates the First Amendment
Mink v. Suthers

E.D. Va. Libel and Privacy Claims Stated Over “Case History” on Company’s Website
Court finds history not fair and accurate; plaintiff’s name used as “advertisement
Wiest v. E-Fense, Inc.

U.S.: Update – Supreme Court May Dismiss Libel Case Following Plaintiff’s Death
Plaintiff’s lawyers argue case is moot; defendants want matter decided
Tory v. Cochran

U.S.: Update – Supreme Court Denies Certiorari in Neutral Reportage Privilege Case
Pennsylvania reporters may be liable for reporting public official’s statements
Norton v. Glenn, cert. denied sub nom. Troy Publishing Co. v. Norton


U.S.: Justice Kennedy Denies Stay of Prior Restraint in Otherwise Pro-1st Amend. Decision
Justice denied application for stay sought by Florida broadcaster
Multimedia Holdings Corp. v. Circuit Court of Fla., St. Johns County

D. Mass.: Mass. Federal District Court Issues, Then Backs Away From, Prior Restraint Order
Order prohibiting reporter from publishing was set to expire after 24 hours
United States v. Dassantos


NY: NY Times Wins Release of Additional 9/11 Materials
New York City Fire Department must provide oral history interviews
The New York Times Co. v. City of New York Fire Dep’t

3d Cir.: Newspaper Not Liable For Publishing Juvenile Arrest Report
Accurate report of minor’s arrest is protected by First Amendment
Bowley v. City of Uniontown

S.C.: South Carolina Supreme Court Sides with Newspaper in FOIA Case
Decisions limits reach of FOIA exception
Evening Post Publishing Co. d/b/a/ The Post and Courier v. City of North Charleston

Cal. App.: Court Affirms Most Documents to Remain Sealed in Jackson Criminal Trial
Most documents should remain sealed to protect against prejudice
People v. Jackson

Pa. Super. Ct.: Pennsylvania Court Rejects Right of Access to Juror Names and Addresses
Court holds there is neither a constitutional nor common law right of access
Commonwealth v. Long

Pa. Commw. Ct.: Pennsylvania Court Rules Autopsy Reports Not Subject to Disclosure
Court holds report not an “official record or paper”
Johnstown Tribune Publishing Co. v. Ross


D.C. Cir.: D.C. Cir. Denies Reporters’ Petition for Rehearing En Banc in Plame Investigation
Petitioners raised common law, First Amendment, and due process arguments
In re: Grand Jury Subpoena, Judith Miller


9th Cir.: Trademark Claim Against Noncommercial Website Dismissed, But Cybersquatting Claim Might Survive
Court holds use of trademark in domain name was not infringement, dilution
Bosley Medical Institute, Inc. v. Kremer

S.D.N.Y.: Proposed Settlement in Post-Tasini Freelance Writers Class Action
Settlement provides compensation for works appearing in electronic databases
In re Literary Works in Electronic Database Copyright Litigation


Belgium: Belgium Enacts Reporters’ Privilege Law