Blog defamation and jurisdiction issues
Date of this Version
In the past, jurisdiction issues in defamation cases were easily resolved because territory was definable. However, jurisdiction is now questionable as anyone with access to the Internet knowingly or unknowingly defames another through blogs or social networking sites downloadable anywhere in the world. Even with the peculiar cross-border nature of cyberspace, Gutnick vs. Dow Jones has shown that defamation litigation can be successful. On the other hand, not every defamed person could get redress for his grievances as in the case of Philippine society columnist Jose Delfin "DJ" Montano - the object of Australian blogger Brian Gorrell''s defamatory writings. Montano's case illustrates the vulnerability of private individuals to cyber defamation and the difficulty of getting redress because there is no appropriate approach to cross-border Internet defamation that would serve both parties fairly. The Montano-Gorrell case illustrates the need for "global consistency" and "unifying principles" in handling internet defamation.