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Re: [OT] Droit d'auteur vs. free software?

Nathanael Nerode <neroden@twcny.rr.com> writes:

> Branden mentioned:
> >In the U.K., truth is not a defense to libel.  It's my understanding
> >that it *is* a defense in the U.S.
> In fact, I believe the burden of proof in the US is on the plaintiff to 
> *prove* that the alleged 'libel' is false.

Um, it's really complex.  If the target is not a public figure, and
the statements are defamatory, then the plaintiff doesn't have to
prove it's false--merely that the defendant acted with disregard for
the truth.  (Truth *is* a defense still, but the burden is on the
defendant to argue it.)

For public figures, this isn't true; in that case, the plaintiff must
prove the falsehood of the statement.  This means that public figures
are more exposed to "defamation", as the price of their publicity.

My understanding is that in the UK truth is still a defense, it's just
that the defendent must prove it in *all* cases, not just ones with
non-public-figure plaintiffs, and that the burden of proof is much


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