Young and Laidlaw, ‘Internet Intermediary Liability in Defamation: Proposals for Statutory Reform’

The law of defamation has long been recognized as out of step with modern tort principles. For example, the publication element requires intentionally conveying defamatory content but no authorship or even knowledge of the content is required. Thus, some have referred to defamation as strict liability.

The paper re-examines the Canadian law of publication in defamation in the context of internet intermediary liability. Search engines and website hosts have been sued in defamation for content created by users. Courts have struggled with whether such intermediaries are publishers and if so, whether they have an innocent dissemination defence. The defence applies to those whose role in publication is secondary, and who have no knowledge of, and are not careless regarding the dissemination of, the defamatory contents …

Young, Hilary and Laidlaw, Emily, Internet Intermediary Liability in Defamation: Proposals for Statutory Reform (February 1, 2017).

First posted 2017-10-03 06:33:46

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