Blog Found Not to Defame Coffee Shop Management
The management of Gorilla Coffee, a Brooklyn coffee shop, was not defamed in an April 2010 New York Times blog post that quoted statements from workers when reporting on a labor dispute, a state judge had ruled.
Ruling Blocks Realtor From Suing Over Comments on Rival's Real Estate Blog
Claims in E-Mail Sent Via Google Found to Be Opinion, Not Libel
International Ltd. to force Google Inc. to turn over extensive information about the sender of an allegedly libelous e-mail criticizing the company's treatment of native Jamaicans has been rebuffed by a New York appellate court in a decision that grapples with the nature of libel claims in the Internet age. A unanimous panel of the Appellate Division, First Department, ruled in Sandals Resorts v. Google, 100628/10, that the online post, considered in its entirety, constituted an expression of opinion.
False Allegation of Homosexuality Unfortunately Remains Defamation Per Se, Judge Says
While the New York Legislature passed a law legalizing same-sex marriage, a Broome County judge has allowed a man to proceed with a libel suit against a woman who alleged he was gay, finding that under appellate case law, the imputation of homosexuality was defamation per se, meaning harm to one's reputation flowing from the alleged defamation need not be proven in order to establish a valid case, but rather is assumed automatically. In Yonaty v. Mincolla, 1003-2009, Broome County Supreme Court Justice Phillip R. Rumsey rejected the defendants' summary judgment motion, and held that the assertion of homosexuality constituted defamation."While the law may, at some point, change... the existing law in New York, as expressed by the Appellate Divisions, which this court is bound to follow, is that imputation of homosexuality constitutes defamation per se." Rulings like Yonatysurface every few years, with trial courts bound to follow Appellate Division precedents in the absence of a Court of Appeals ruling on whether the imputation of homosexuality constitutes defamation per se.
(The above content is all based on recent articles and analysis from the New York Law Journal).