Defamation and Public Figures Analytical Essay by scribbler

Defamation and Public Figures
A look at what constitutes slander in US law.
# 151737 | 914 words | 3 sources | APA | 2012 | US
Published on Sep 07, 2012 in Law (Civil) , Law (Tort)

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This paper takes an in-depth look at ramifications of slander, first by defining the term and then considering its legal consequences. First, the paper differentiates between slander, libel and defamatory statements. Then, it lists the elements necessary for a case of defamation. Additionally, the paper considers when an individual is considered a public figure. Various cases and precedents are cited that further demonstrate when one is a public figure and has experienced defamation of character. The paper concludes with a discussion of the torts of defamation.

From the Paper:

"As seen in the 1964 Supreme Court Case of New York Times v Sullivan, where a public figure attempts to bring an action for defamation, the public figure must prove an additional element: that the statement was made with actual malice. This means that the person making the statement knew that the statement was false, or issued the statement with reckless disregard as to its truth. A good example is when Ariel Sharon sued Time Magazine over allegations of his conduct relating to the massacres at the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps. Even though the jury concluded that the Time story included false allegations, they found that Time had not acted with actual malice and thus did not award any damages (Larson, 2006).
"The idea of the public figure encompasses more than celebrities and politicians. A person can turn into an involuntary public figure as the result of publicity, even though they did not want or invite the public attention. People who are accused of high profile crimes may be unable to pursue actions for defamation even after their innocence has been proved, on the basis that the notoriety associated with the case and the accusations against them turned them into involuntary public figures..."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Franklin, Marc A. (2002). Torts. Chicago: BarBri.
  • Larson, Aaron. (2006). Defamation, Libel and Slander Law. Retrieved February 26, 2010, from Expert Law Web site:
  • Libel and Slader. (2010). Retrieved February 26, 2010, from Web site:

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

Defamation and Public Figures (2012, September 07) Retrieved March 29, 2023, from

MLA Format

"Defamation and Public Figures" 07 September 2012. Web. 29 March. 2023. <>