Libel Lawsuit Could Shape Blog Law

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libelgraphic Blois Olson, Democratic PR executive, has filed a libel suit against Michael Brodkorb for comments made on his blog. Patrick Sweeney writes about the case for Pioneer Press:

Olson’s lawsuit, which was served to Brodkorb on Tuesday but has not yet been filed in court, seeks damages of more than $50,000 and a court order forcing Brodkorb to remove from the blog a Dec. 28 posting about Olson and his St. Paul-based public relations company.

In the Dec. 28 item, Brodkorb suggested that Olson had publicly criticized former FBI agent Coleen Rowley’s campaign for Congress because Rowley’s campaign staff last summer refused to hire Olson’s firm, New School Communications.

Olson insists the item was a fabrication; Brodkorb says he’s confident it was true.

“Here’s an anonymous blogger that wasn’t willing to retract something that could damage my reputation and my business — and that’s false,” Olson said Wednesday.

Brodkorb said, “It’s as simple as a Democratic operative trying to silence a Republican operative’s blog. He’s going to proceed with this through the courts, and I will, too.”

Jane Kirtley, a lawyer and journalism professor at the University of Minnesota, predicted that the lawsuit — if it goes to trial and eventually is appealed — could help determine whether courts will hold blogs to the same standards that newspapers and broadcasters face.

Link to article via Boing Boing

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