DISINFORMATION AND POLARIZATION: IS LIBEL LAW A CAUSE AND/OR A CURE?
On February 25, 2022, Clinic Director Clare Norins and UGA Professor Jonathan Peters moderated a panel discussion with Nora Benavidez (Free Press), Tom Clare (Clare Locke), and Lee Levine (retired from Ballard Spahr) about the benefits and challenges of using libel actions to combat false information on air and online. The conversation included whether the U.S. Supreme Court is likely to revisit New York Times v. Sullivan‘s actual malice standard for public figure defamation claims and selected alternative methods for reducing harmful false speech.
The panel was part of the 31st annual Georgia Bar, Media & Judiciary Conference, chaired by Peter Canfield of Jones Day.
Disinformation and Polarization: Is Libel Law a Cause and/or a Cure?
31st annual Georgia Bar, Media & Judiciary Conference, Feb. 23-25, 2022 (virtual event) Feb. 25, 2022: False information on air and online, including about the 2020 election in Georgia and elsewhere, has produced a string of high profile libel suits as well as calls for libel legal reform. A panel of experts reviews and analyzes the issues and makes some predictions.
• Clare Norins, UGA
• Jonathan Peters, UGA
• Nora Benavidez, Free Press
• Tom Clare, Clare Locke
• Lee Levine, Ballard Spahr (ret)
Defamation is a false statement of fact that harms the reputation of a person, business, or organization. Journalists, news organizations, and even ordinary people can be sued for defamation, which is a common tactic to chill or silence legitimate speech and criticism. Read more about our defamation defense work here.Explore Issue