Anti-Defamation League: YouTube Should Delete Neo-Nazi Videos ‘Immediately’
Monday, YouTube told The Daily Beast that the company would not block a couple of accounts belonging to Atomwaffen Division, a neo-Nazi organization associated with several recent murders that the nonprofit publication ProPublica called “one of the country’s most notorious extremist groups.”
One YouTube video titled “Zealous Operation” showed masked members of the group yelling “gas the kikes, race war now,” before they begin firing guns. This specific video appears to have been removed some time after The Daily Beast article was published. Other videos on the same channel, including one showing masked members of the group putting up swastikas and signs saying “black lives don’t matter” around Washington’s Evergreen State College, are still live.
Monday, YouTube told The Daily Beast that the company would not block a couple of accounts belonging to Atomwaffen Division, a neo-Nazi organization associated with several recent murders that the nonprofit publication ProPublica called “one of the country’s most notorious extremist groups.” One YouTube video titled “Zealous Operation” showed masked members of the group yelling “gas the kikes, race war now,” before they begin firing guns. This specific video appears to have been removed some time after The Daily Beast article was published. Other videos on the same channel, including one showing masked members of the group putting up swastikas and signs saying “black lives don’t matter” around Washington’s Evergreen State College, are still live. This specific video appears to have been removed some time after The Daily Beast article was published. Other videos on the same channel, including one showing masked members of the group putting up swastikas and signs saying “black lives don’t matter” around Washington’s Evergreen State College, are still live. “black lives don’t matter” around Washington’s Evergreen State College, are still live.
Kehoe awarded €3,500 in defamation case against RTÉ
A former Sinn Féin councillor has won his High Court case for damages against RTÉ for defamation and has been awarded €3,500.
Nicky Kehoe, who is now a political manager for Sinn Féin, had sued over comments made about him during a live radio debate on Saturday with Claire Byrne in October 2015.
The jury found the contents of the broadcast meant that Mr Kehoe was not a fit person to be involved in the democratic process.
However, it found the broadcaster was only 35% responsible for the defamation and former Labour TD Joe Costello was responsible for 65%.
RTÉ lawyers say they plan to appeal the case and said it is possibly the lowest award of damages ever made in a defamation case.
The costs of the case are likely to be much higher.
These have not yet been decided.
Series of questions for jury
On the issue paper, the jury was asked a series of questions.
These included if the contents of the broadcast, taken as a whole, meant that Mr Kehoe was a member of the IRA army council, was a member of an illegal criminal organisation or that he controlled Sinn Féin votes on Dublin City Council on behalf of the IRA army council.
They jury also had to decide if the broadcast meant that Mr Kehoe was involved in a deliberate attempt to subvert the operation of Dublin City Council to further the aims of an illegal organisation and that he was not a fit person to be involved in the democratic process.
The jury answered “No” to all but one of the above questions, but answered “Yes” to the final part – that the broadcast meant Mr Kehoe was not a fit person to be involved in the democratic process.
Lawyers awarded $84,000 in defamation case against man with malicious website
Two lawyers have been awarded $84,000 in a civil case against a conman who defamed them on a website he runs.
Hawke’s Bay lawyers Phillip Ross and Clifford Church had both acted for the prolific conman Brian Hunter in the past.
They took a civil claim for defamation against Hunter in December 2016 in relation to articles on Hunter’s website in which he referred to them as “The Terrible Two” and to Ross as “Coward of the County”.
Among other things, he referred to the lawyers as “gutless”, “two-faced” and “devious”.
Hunter, 59, has amassed nearly 200 convictions in various parts of the country over 40 years, including for impersonating a pilot and a lawyer, which have seen him serve a range of sentences.
The defamation case was heard by Judge Brooke Gibson late last year. In a decision released this week the judge found that Hunter’s articles were “plainly aimed at injuring the plaintiffs in their professional standing”.
“The articles are defamatory in the way alleged [by Ross and Church] in that they are calculated to lower the plaintiff’s personal and professional reputations in the estimation of right-thinking members of the community, and bring them into odium and contempt,” the judge said.
He said Hunter had included meta-data in his website that intended a Google search to link words to the plaintiffs and this was “ample illustration of the express malice, spite and ill will aimed at the plaintiffs”.
Hunter had also posted the articles to clients of Ross in unmarked envelopes around the North Island. It was also sent to a sentenced prisoner at Auckland prison.
Church and Ross also sought damages of $20,000 each plus a further $10,000 for Ross and $25,000 for Church.
The judge was satisfied that the material had been seen by a number of people before Hunter removed it from his website.
Ross was awarded $50,000 and Church $34,000.
The judge also made a permanent injunction prohibiting Hunter from publishing material that makes further defamatory allegations against the men.
Ross said the decision showed that the internet was “not a special case which is immune to the normal laws of defamation and off limits”.
Standup comedian’s husband sues for defamation over ‘provocative’ show
An award-winning standup comedian is being sued by her estranged husband for allegedly defaming him in her show.
The lawsuit, described by a leading lawyer as a test case, relates to a show by Louise Beamont (stage name Reay). Hard Mode was billed as as a “provocative show [that] explores censorship and surveillance”; though one critic described it as being “at its core … about a very recent and raw heartbreak”.
Thomas Reay is also suing his wife for breach of privacy and data protection, is seeking £30,000 in damages plus legal costs and wants an injunction to prevent her publishing statements about him, she said.
Beamont, the 2015 Alternative New Comedian of the Year, said she would be bankrupted if she loses the case and has launched a crowdfunding page to raise money for her defence.
She wrote: “[Hard Mode] was a 50-minute show about censorship and authoritarianism, asking the audience to imagine that the BBC had come into the control of the Chinese government.
“During that show, I referred to my husband a couple of times – perhaps 2 minutes’ worth of reference in a 50-minute show. The main gist of those references was to tell the audience how sad I was that my marriage had broken down recently.”
Beamont said that she removed the material from subsequent performances at the Edinburgh fringe last summer – without admitting liability – when she received the first complaint from her husband but a writ was subsequently issued
Beamont, who refused to comment beyond a post on her gofundme page for legal reasons, wrote: “As standup comedians, I believe it’s the very definition of our job to talk about our lives and social issues. So this has become a free speech issue – and free speech means everything to me.”
EDITORIAL: Let’s talk about defamation, shall we?
Recently, High Court Master Fidela Corbin-Lincoln handed down a ruling that has paved the way for Prime Minister Gaston Browne to sue Damani Tabor for defamation. The spokesperson for the opposition United Progressive Party (UPP) will now have to defend himself in the High Court against the claim that he has defamed the prime minister as it relates to comments made about the prime minister’s wife’s charity. It is going to be an interesting one.
Defamation is an interesting thing. In this case, even the Master did not interpret the words uttered by Damani to mean what the prime minister and his legal team were inferring. In her nine-page ruling she stated that while, she, a legal officer, does not find that the words complained or connotate any illegality or corruption, she had to bear in mind that that was not what she was asked to consider. If that is confusing to you then you are not alone.
This thing called defamation is an interesting legal concept in the Caribbean. Prior to the most recent changes to the laws, defamation was a “fine and confine” law. Meaning that you could see some time behind bars for defaming a person. Luckily, the criminal element has been removed and it is now a civil action, which can be an extremely effective weapon against an opponent and media once you can get the case into court.
From our point of view, we are the “pig in the middle”, as publisher and broadcaster, the OBSERVER Media Group finds itself too often before the court to defend ourselves for what other people have said. For full disclosure, we are part of this action as the Prime Minister has included us in the lawsuit as defendants. But we are not here to talk specifically about this matter but more about the oddities of defamation, in general. We are simply using some of the Master’s comments as reference.
Jane Collins defamation case: UKIP delayed case
UKIP “deliberately delayed” settlement of a libel case for “political advantage” ahead of the 2015 general election, the High Court has ruled.
The case was brought by three Rotherham Labour MPs over comments made by UKIP MEP Jane Collins about the Rotherham child abuse scandal.
Mr Justice Warby said the defamation action would have been “swiftly” settled had UKIP not interfered.
He added the party should be held liable for some of the costs.
In 2017, Ms Collins, the MEP for Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire, was ordered to pay £54,000 in damages to each of the three MPs – Sir Kevin Barron, John Healey and Sarah Champion – who all represent Rotherham constituencies.
She was also directed to pay costs of £196,000.
The three MPs had taken action over a speech which Jane Collins gave at the UKIP conference in September 2014, a month after a report found about 1,400 children in the area had been abused between 1997 and 2013.
She had claimed the MPs had known about the exploitation of children and had not intervened.
Ms Collins had repeatedly tried to delay the case against her and had not apologised for her remarks and the MPs had felt their integrity was under attack, Mr Justice Warby said.
None of the money had been paid and the MPs claimed UKIP should meet the costs.
The party admitted it had provided £31,000 to the MEP but said its main concern had been to settle the claims against her.
Mr Justice Warby said UKIP could not be held responsible for Ms Collins remarks and had begun by supporting her in good faith.
But, he said, things changed in late February and early March 2015.
“In that period, the party took a deliberate, informed and calculated decision, for reasons of party political advantage, to ensure that the case was not settled before the general election,” he said.
“In my judgment, it very probably did thereby prevent a settlement that it had been advised should be made and which would otherwise have occurred quite swiftly.”
Tabor to appeal defamation ruling
There will be an appeal of the decision of the Master of the High Court, who this week granted Prime Minister Gaston Browne permission to sue the opposition United Progressive Party’s (UPP) spokesman, Damani Tabor, for alleged defamation over a year ago.
Attorney Charlesworth Tabor, who represents the UPP senator, told OBSERVER media, he will be filing the appeal on several grounds.
The case is one in which the prime minister alleges that the UPP spokesman’s comments and questions on OBSERVER Radio, over a year ago, suggested he (Browne) was involved in criminal wrong doing or misfeasance through the alleged transfer of five million dollars to his wife’s charity, Share Incorporated.
The lawyer opined that the decision of the Master, Fidela Corbin-Lincoln, “was wrong in law” and he said that in ascertaining the meaning of words for defamation, the court should have rejected “any meaning which can only emerge as the product of some strained or forced or utterly unreasonable interpretation.”
The former High Court registrar said there is no way that the words complained of by the prime minister, suggest he is guilty of criminal corruption, misfeasance in public office and breach of fiduciary duties.
The lawyer said that it was “ridiculous” and “utterly unreasonable” for the Master to conclude that a reasonable/ordinary person could form such an opinion upon hearing the UPP spokesman’s comments and questions about the matter.
There were two causes of action in the defamation claim filed by the prime minister last year: defamation based on the natural and ordinary meaning of the words and; defamation based on an innuendo.
Earlier this week, PM Browne got the ruling granting him permission to sue the spokesman for the opposition UPP for defamation.
In the nine-page ruling, the Master of the Court wrote that while she, as a legal officer, did not find that the words complained of connote any illegality or corruption, she must bear in mind this is not what she was asked to consider.
Myanmar Journalist Charged With Defamation Refuses to Apologize to Firebrand Monk
A prominent Myanmar investigative journalist charged with defamation refused to apologize for a social media post he wrote about the country’s most notorious ultranationalist Buddhist monk though the prosecution offered to drop the case against him at a courthouse in the central Myanmar city of Mandalay on Tuesday.
Swe Win, editor-in-chief of the nonprofit independent news service Myanmar Now, faces charges for violating Article 66(d) of the 2013 Telecommunications Act by defaming Wirathu, a firebrand monk who frequently uses hate speech targeting the country’s Muslim minority.
The article prohibits the use of the telecom network to defame people and carries a jail sentence of up to three years and a fine for those found guilty of violating it.
State prosecutor Kyaw Myo Shwe said during today’s hearing that he would withdraw his lawsuit against Swe Win if he apologized for allegedly sharing a Facebook post criticizing Wirathu for supporting the alleged murderer of a prominent Muslim lawyer.
However, Swe Win declined the offer during his 18th appearance in court in connection with the case.
“I do not personally hate U [honorific] Wirathu,” Swe Win said. “I’m not being stubborn by refusing to apologize to him. I cannot change my words.”
Also at the hearing, the judge accepted documents and a compact disc with a video interview Swe Win gave at a press conference, which the prosecution submitted as evidence.
Khin Maung Myint, Swe Win’s lawyer, said believes the CD is inadmissible evidence that the judge should not have accepted.
He argued that the prosecutor made the recording from a Radio Free Asia broadcast but edited certain parts, distorting the context of Swe Win’s comments about Wirathu, the online journal The Irrawaddy reported. He also said that the CD was not submitted to the court when the charges were initially filed.
“We will file an appeal with the Mandalay district court,” Khin Maung Myint said.
Swe Win’s next court date is scheduled for Feb. 26.