OPINION: Court decision cautions us to care for the truth

CincinnatiCredits: Cincinnati.com By: Jeffrey Layne Blevins

‘Truth and responsibility may matter again in online defamation cases after a recent U.S. District Court decision in Eastern Kentucky.

For too long the anonymity afforded to third-party posters and the broad immunity provided to online operators has fed an untruthful and irresponsible environment for online dialogue. No one – including the anonymous poster, nor the commercial operator – had to substantiate the truth of what they say, or take responsibility for the harm caused by any falsehoods they spread.

Let’s hope that the recent court decision will improve the quality of online speech by encouraging all of us to construct our comments with more care for the truth, and take responsibility for what we say.’

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