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2006

Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Science and Technology Law

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Relative Access To Corrective Speech: A New Test For Requiring Actual Malice, Aaron K. Perzanowski Jan 2006

Relative Access To Corrective Speech: A New Test For Requiring Actual Malice, Aaron K. Perzanowski

Faculty Publications

This Article reexamines the First Amendment protections provided by the public figure doctrine. It suggests that the doctrine is rooted in a set of out-dated assumptions regarding the media landscape and, as a result, has failed to adapt in a manner that accounts for our changing communications environment.

The public figure doctrine, which imposes the more rigorous actual malice standard of fault on defamation plaintiffs who enjoy greater access to mass media, was constructed in an era defined by one-to-many communications media. Newspapers, broadcasters, and traditional publishers exhausted the Court's understanding of the means of communicating with mass audiences ...