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Just the Right Amount of Ridiculous

As the saying goes, it’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt. But as satirical television shows like South Park become more popular, it is clear that sometimes comic relief takes precedence when a statement would otherwise be considered defamatory.

Though satire and parody share fundamental elements, there are minor differences between the definitions of parody and satire that affect how each is treated differently under the law. Parodies are distorted images of original works for the purpose of humor and/or commentary. They are protected…

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  • Defamation
  • May 31, 2017

Abigail joins the Firm

Abigail is the currently the Client Relation Coordinator and Assistant to the Managing Partner.  Abigail recently graduated Cum Laude at Pepperdine University where she received her B.A. in Liberal Arts with an emphasis in Writing and Rhetoric and a minor in Philosophy.  While at Pepperdine she was the Assistant Editor for the Perspectives section of the college newspaper, the Pepperdine Graphic.  She also was a member of the Alpha Phi fraternity, and she co-wrote and directed hers, and three other Greek organizations, participation in Song Fest, a mini-musical competition.  Abigail…

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  • The Firm
  • May 23, 2017

“A Private Life is a Happy Life”

Because private individuals generally choose to stay out of the public sphere, they are naturally afforded greater privacy under defamation law. While public figures must prove that a publisher of a defamatory statement acted with actual malice, private individuals must only demonstrate that the publisher acted negligently in publishing the statement.

The Supreme Court established the negligence standard for defamatory statements regarding private individuals in the 1968 case of Gertz v. Welch.

After Chicago police officer Robert Nuccio shot and killed a youth named Nelson, the boy’s family hired…

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  • Defamation
  • May 16, 2017

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