Defamation and the Internet

The Internet has drawn much attention and discussion in regard to issues and shortcomings relating to current libel and defamation laws. Many of these laws are currently undergoing review, as many tenets of existing codes do not address certain fundamental questions and implications that the Internet raises about the nature and enforceability of defamation safeguards. What kind of jurisdiction does a state (both national and international) have over a transgressor of its laws from outside that state? Is an act illegal if committed over the Internet from a state where that same act is deemed legal? What liability does the service provider shoulder? What kind of legislation, if any, is necessary to protect privacy rights, freedom of speech, and defamation laws? This website explores these questions by examining the major cyberspace libel cases that have guided many of the trends in current legislation and court precedent, the changing laws adapting to the Internet's special needs, and the steps that need to be taken to accomodate issues likely to arise in the future as more and more of the world gains access to the Internet.

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