Out-Law.com reports on a libel case in the U.K. that may be of interest to U.S. readers also, as it demonstrates the contrast between our libel laws and the U.K.’s. Over here, the CDA Section 230 protects online publishers from liability for comments made by third parties. In the U.K., the newspaper successfully invoked their E-Commerce Regulations, which seems to give them similar immunity, but only if they remove the material once they are made aware of a problem:
A newspaper publisher was not liable for user comments posted after an online article and will not have to pay out libel damages, the High Court has ruled.
The Court upheld the publisher’s right under the E-Commerce Regulations not to be responsible for user comments until informed of them. Newsquest also defeated a libel claim in relation to the article itself.
The article concerned Imran Karim, a struck-off solicitor, his sister and his mother. Headlined ‘Crooked solicitors spent client money on a Rolex, loose women and drink’, it reported a Law Society hearing at which Karim was barred from practising as a solicitor because he stole £868,000 of clients’ money to fund a lavish lifestyle.