While the Freedom of Speech is one of the most important rights in America, there are laws against libel and slander. These court cases have made headlines and changed the way that we think about reporting the news.
Cameron Diaz Versus The British Sun
It is common for tabloids to report that celebrities are in a relationship with someone. However, The Sun made a mistake when they accused Cameron Diaz of having an affair with her married friend, Shane Nickerson. She was able to successfully sue the tabloid for defamation. She received an undisclosed sum of money and a public apology.
Robin Williams Versus His Lookalike
Some people have made a career out of their resemblance to a celebrity. However, one Robin Williams impersonator took things to an entirely new level. He pretended to be Robin Williams, causing damage to Williams’ reputation.
Williams eventually sued his lookalike, and was able to win the case with ease. The lookalike was using Robin Williams’ name to cheat charities out of money, and he was eventually punished for this.
Keira Knightley Versus The Daily Mail
As with many celebrities before her, The Daily Mail accused Keira Knightley of having a serious eating disorder.
Knightley decided to fight back against these unfounded accusations. She won the case against the Daily Mail, and donated some of the proceeds to charities that help women with eating disorders. In many cases, these kinds of high-profile libel cases can have a very positive impact.
There are a number of famous libel and slander cases that have gone through the court. Although libel is difficult to prove, sometimes, false accusations need to be challenged. When these claims go unchecked, people are able to spread lies and dangerous information without consequence. These cases set a strong precedent and keep publications from published false information.
It is interesting that most of these tabloids have been in the United Kingdom and not from newspapers in the United States. There are some good news for tabloid magazines though. Recently, the New Jersey supreme court in Bridgeton mitigated how much a company can pay in damages because there’s no way to determine both actual and presumed damages.