Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Australia's defamation laws

Last week I had cause to look into Australia's defamation laws. A book was just published in Australia that was undoubtedly defamatory of me (and numerous others).  By the way, my advice to everyone would be not to waste your money on this tripe. There is already a PDF of the complete book circulating on the Internet.

In various interviews subsequent to the publication of the book, the author (Rachel Landers) amplified her attacks on me and eventually, like a Muslim cleric, effectively issued a fatwa against me (when, for the few pieces of silver she would get from selling her piece of fiction as a movie, she advocates my eradication). But I will say more about that book in my next posting. Our topic here is Australia's defamation laws, probably little different from what exists in most or all developed, capitalist countries.

I began my research on the subject at a forum called LawAnswers.com.au, which bills itself as "Australia's #1 Legal Community". I posted my question there and was pleased to get a very helpful response soon thereafter. But then things quickly started to go downhill. A fellow by the name of Tim W followed up with a rather useless and non-constructive response, saying little more than that I could hire a lawyer. He later admitted that his advice to me was worth exactly what I paid for it, and I promptly agreed. That is when I found that my postings to the forum were being censored (deleted and ultimately blocked in advance). I said nothing rude or untoward, but - apparently - it is unacceptable on that forum to not appreciate Tim W's shallow words. But I digress. What did I discover about the defamation laws in Australia? Quite simply, they are only congenial to greedy bottom-feeders and wealthy victims who can demonstrate substantial financial loss.

In a case like mine, the author and the publisher might well have dismissed any concern about a defamation lawsuit simply because the cost of losing would be minimal compared to the profits they expected to amass from the defamation. So, if indeed the author or the publisher consulted a lawyer before publishing, their main concern might well have been only how much they would have to pay out if a defamation suit be brought. Once they knew that paltry sum, they probably had all of the information that mattered to them. After all, if they had had any concern for human rights, human dignity, human decency, privacy, justice, or even mere accuracy or factuality, then surely they would have at least contacted me soon after publishing, if not - and much more sensibly - before publishing.

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