Date: Tue, 30 Dec 1997 08:39:10 -0500
Reply-To: Mike Davenport <Mike.Davenport@RICHMOND.PPDI.COM>
Sender: "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@UGA.CC.UGA.EDU>
From: Mike Davenport <Mike.Davenport@RICHMOND.PPDI.COM>
Subject: Re: 800 lb gorillas / advice / McDonalds case
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
i was under the impresion that as long as there is absence of malice (and the
plaintiff must prove otherwise) there is no case for libel or slander.
Seltzer, Jon D. wrote:
> I am pretty sure the Web site
> http://www.techtalk.org/ provides consultants and
> consulting firms an a anonymous forum to discuss the business and
> experiences. I do not run the site.
> First I am not a lawyer.
> I have been truly amazed and annoyed by some of the responses in this
> thread. As far as I know in the United States of America there is some
> law or something about freedom of speech, provided you are not trying
> to spread false information for the primary purpose of intentionally
> hurting an individual or company.
> Here are the things I learned right or wrong. They are opinions and
> should not be taken as legal advice or facts.
> 1) It is my opinion that liable is extremely hard to prove in court.
> Was there Malicious intent?!
> 2) It is my opinion it is extremely costly to try to take an
> individual to court for Liable. In my opinion it is much cheaper to try
> to intimidate or threaten an individual with legal action, or to use one
> individual to be made an example of.
> 3) It is my opinion that if you have a problem with a consulting firm,
> document exactly what happened. In my opinion if you feel the need to
> share your experience with other individuals do not embellish your
> opinions and give subjective views on the intent or morality of what
> happened. Stick with the facts. In my opinion the goal and intent
> should be to give helpful information to help other consultants so they
> can better assess which firm is right for them to work with and not to
> hurt the consulting firm. In my opinion providing information on how a
> firm has treated an individual will help a consultant to decide whether
> that firm is right for them. I believe each individual that reads about
> different experiences will weight the accuracy of that information based
> on there own experiences and prior information based on other
> individuals experiences they learned of in deciding if a firm is right
> for them to work with.
> 4) In my opinion if a consulting firm feels the information about them
> is incorrect and they feel it may make them look un-ethical they could
> sue the individual, negotiate with the individual, ignore the individual
> or address there opinions in the open internet forum where and when
> appropriate if they disagree. Having an open forum somewhere (Not
> SAS-L) on the how consulting firms treat their employees will help
> consulting firms that are considerate to their employees rise to the
> top, help all consultants, and help companies that hire consulting
> firms. If I were hiring, I for one would rather hire a happy consultant
> who likes the company they are working for than an unhappy one. I think
> happy consultants do better work. Information, Integrating Information
> and Competition is good for everyone trying to make an honest buck in
> this business!!!.
> 5) And finally with respect to the below post. If I were a United
> Kingdom consultant using SAS and living in perhaps Longdon, the below
> information would be relevant since the case was tried in the United
> Kingdom under United Kingdom law! I am sure all the United Kingdom
> consultants are appreciative of your post. I could be wrong on this,
> but I am pretty sure United States legal system is not the same as the
> United Kingdom legal system, even if you live in New England!. Although
> the below post is informative for individuals living in England using
> SAS, it is a red herring for individuals living in the United States.
> That distinction was not made.
> >From: Dianne Rhodes[SMTP:drhodes@FENIX2.DOL-ESA.GOV]
> >Sent: Monday, December 29, 1997 10:53 AM
> >To: SAS-L@VM.MARIST.EDU
> >Subject: 800 lb gorillas / advice / McDonalds case
> >Last night, "60 Minutes" broadcast a mini-documentary about McDonald's libel
> >suit against two individuals from London Greenpeace. The courts held for
> >McD's, even though the plaintiffs were about to prove that the "defamatory"
> >materials were substantially true. In light of the recent discussion on libel
> >on the net I thought I would do a search on libel internet and McDonalds.
> >Information about the broadcast and the case can be found at:
> >For the legalese minded, check out.
> >This review of some reported cases should give Internet Users and Systems
> >Operators pause. While little definitive authority yet exists, you certainly
> >do not want to become one of the first to find out how these legal questions
> >will resolve themselves.
> >I for one couldn't agree more. As for those Karp Associates ...
> > Dianne Louise Rhodes
> > Computer Data Systems, Inc. (CDSI)
> > U.S. Department of Labor
> > Office of Workers' Compensation
> > (202) 219-8468
> > (202) 219-7312 (fax)
> > email@example.com