David Barton, president of Wallbuilder Presentations Inc., sued Petitioners Judy Jennings and Rebecca Bell-Metereau for defamation in connection with a video the pair — who ran for the Texas State Board of Education in 2010 — produced about a controversy involving state school curriculum guidelines. Jennings and Bell-Metereau filed a motion to dismiss Barton's case under the Texas Citizens Participation Act.
Kevin Padrick and Obsidian Finance Group, LLC sued blogger Crystal Cox, claiming that Cox libeled them through a series of postings on her Internet blog. The trial court jury ruled in favor of Padrick and Obsidian and returned a $2.5 million verdict in their favor. Cox moved for a new trial, which was denied. The decision in the trial court below turned on whether she was a journalist and whether her speech involved a matter of public concern – both of which affects the standard of liability under Oregon law.
William Hoeper, a former pilot for Air Wisconsin Airlines, sued his former employer for defamation after employees from the regional airline notified Transportation Security Administration officials of their concerns about Mr. Hoeper's "mental stability" following a failed proficiency flight training test.
Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press Executive Director Lucy Dalglish testified before the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee of the Maryland General Assembly, in support of SB 221. which clarifies and modernizes Maryland's anti-SLAPP law. SB 221 offers several important improvements to the current law, including the removal of the requirement that defendants show that the plaintiff filed the lawsuit in “bad faith” – that is, with the intent to use it to stifle constitutionally protected expression – in order to have the lawsuit dismissed as a SLAPP.
Urging the U.S.Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to uphold the constitutionality of the Washington anti-SLAPP statute, which provides broad protection for action involving public participation and petition.
Urging the Baltimore trial court to dismiss under the Maryland anti-SLAPP statute City Councilwoman Belinda Conaway's defamation and emotional distress suit against Internet journalist Adam Meister over online posts asserting that Conaway lives outside Baltimore while representing its Seventh Electoral District, in violation of the City Charter.
Urging the Virgin Islands Supreme Court to affirm a ruling that a retired judge failed to prove actual malice in his defamation claims against the local newspaper and one of its reporters for statements about the performance of his official duties, and asking the Court to extend the mandate of independent appellate de novo review beyond the issue of actual malice to include all constitutional issues in a defamation cause of action.
Urging the Maryland Court of Appeals to rule that a business owner lacks standing to sue for defamation based on statements about the company and to find that attorneys are privileged to provide journalists with copies of legal filings, as well as fair and accurate summaries of and comments on the documents and other judicial actions.