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June 2022

MediaLawLetter May 2022

in this issue

On Leakers and Lakers: Reflections on Two Recent MLRC Zoom Sessions

George Freeman

MLRC's executive director reflects on tthe recent SCOTUS leak, and a retraction demand sent by Jerry West to the producers of HBO's "Winning Time."

Los Angeles Jury Sides with Kardashian/Jenner Family in Lawsuit Brought by Reality-TV Personality Blac Chyna  

Rochelle Wilcox and Sam Cate-Gumpert

The trial focused on two issues – whether it was substantially true that Chyna had assaulted Rob in December 2016, and whether the Defendants’ statements to the E! network were the proximate cause of its decision to not exercise its option for a second season.


Trump’s Use of Phrases Like “Kung Flu” and “China Virus” to Describe Covid-19 Is Not Defamatory

Alexa Millinger

The court viewed Trump’s statements as referring to all Asian-Americans with no specific reference to any member of the plaintiff organization that would support a group libel doctrine theory.


Washington Federal Court SLAPPs Project Veritas Lawsuit

Bruce E.H. Johnson

In May 2022, not surprisingly, given Washington’s pioneering role, Judge Thomas S. Zilly, a federal judge in Seattle, became the first judge to grant a UPEPA motion for expedited relief and dismissal under the state’s new anti-SLAPP law.

Florida Court’s Split on Appealability of Anti-SLAPP Denials

Minch Minchin

A recent decision from Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal has teed up for the state Supreme Court the issue of whether a trial court’s denial of an anti-SLAPP motion is immediately appealable.

Texas Lacks Jurisdiction for Defamation Suit Over Docudrama

Cameron Stracher and Sara Tesoriero

Location, location, location.  The real estate axiom has never been more relevant to defamation cases in light of the hodge-podge of state anti-SLAPP statutes, and federal courts’ interpretation of those laws.

Section 230 Does Not Apply to Retweet Because Author Said He “Vouch[ed] for” the Retweeted Article

Sara Benson & Cindy Gierhart

The Court held that Section 230 “may provide immunity for someone who merely shares a link on Twitter” but “it does not immunize someone for making additional remarks that are allegedly defamatory.”