Not to mention the jackholes who are acting on the false information.
Can they sue Fox?
Not unless they can prove Fox knew the address was wrong and reported it anyway.
I’m sure there will be some sort of settlement, but John Loftus should lose his gig for this.
I love how someone spraypainted “Terrist” on their house.
IANAL but if they made a factually incorrect report some sort of negligence claim might apply, separate from any defamation issue.
He obviously takes lessons from the White House on verifying information.
Apparently the police in Orange County have an unlisted number, and the only way Mr. Loftus could contact them was over television airwaves. Either that or Loftus is a complete twit who thinks inciting mobs is a perfectly good response to allegations of wrongdoing.
They’re just hating on the terriers that make Westminster their bitch ever year.
Should the “news” be in the habit of giving out addresses over the air to begin with?
Some people feel it’s perfectly fine to shame and humiliate people on the airwaves. There used to be a cop near here (Sgt. Pimintel, from Taunton, MA, if you’re curious) who had his own show where he would read the names of people arrested (not convicted) that week, and call them “Toilet-licking scum.” If you tried to sue him over it, you could be sure to get quite a few more traffic tickets until you dropped the suit.
That’s what I was wondering too. Apparently, as quoted in Orbifold’s post, Loftus thought it was the best way to notify the police of his suspicions.
I think you have to know the information is false to be liable for slander, but this goes beyond that. The outcome–idiots threatening them and vandalizing their home–was not only predictable, but was the only reasonable intended result for giving out the address on the air (along with directions and a satellite photo, according to one article I read). As such, they may be liable for having a reckless disregard for the truth.
Has the righty blogosphere picked up talking points on this yet? Let me guess–“Dan Rather! Dan Rather! Dan Rather!”
The best way :rolleyes: . I’m going to sprain my eyes from rolling them like that. Lets assume, for a minute, that Hilal did in fact still live in the house -does that make the act right? What if the mob decides to, I don’t know, assault the residents or burn the house down? Giving out a private address, especially when it hasn’t been confirmed, is an act of negligence of the highest order. I would even guess that Loftus was trying to incite some sort of vigilante activity.
actually it made the act even stupider (if that’s possible). If Hilal was still living there and was a terrorist, by making the address/accusation public, it would have given Hilal the heads up to move on out.
“we report, you desecrate”.
Apparently my sarcasm is too subtle. I’ll dial it up a notch in future.
I’m curious as to whether or not the police will charge Loftus/FOX for the squad car, officers, etc. needed to protect the family. After all, that “runaway bride” lady was charged for the resources her little stunt used up. Why shouldn’t Loftus/FOX have to pay for their part in this?
Even if it had been confirmed, the way to handle it is to make a call to the police. Or the FBI. Or the DoHS. Inciting vigilante violence is not the way to counteract terrism, people!
True to some extent. Libel cases can be broken down into two categories: those of public and those of private individuals. Public individuals, by their very nature, put themselves out there for society to discuss and thus, for them, proving libel is quite a bit more difficult. For them there does need to be actual malice reckless disregard for the truth of the matter asserted.
For private individuals, which one would assume this homeowner is, mere negligence or careless error is enough to prove libel.
adam yax can you say WHOOOOOOSH?
I don’t see where “libel” occurs. They didn’t accuse the real home owner of anything. They accused some one else who used to live there, publicized the address, which of course, now belonged to some one else. Hell it would have had the same effect if Hilal had still lived the same place but the nimrods at Fox aired a different address. I would think simple liability would come into play - I shoot a gun into the air, I’m responsible for the damage the bullet makes. They spouted off an address claiming a ‘terrist’ lived there, and damage (or penis) ensued.