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Terry Giblin
2010-Dec-26, 04:33 PM
Libel reform campain (http://www.libelreform.org/) - Sence about Science (http://www.senseaboutscience.org.uk/index.php/site/project/333/)

How many people who signed the petition, would ever be sued for libel, so why sign?

Freedom of speech, does not give anyone the right to commit libel, to lie or bear false witness, to name only three.

Richard Dawkins (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqVm-WmFzyU), said "blasphemy, is a victimless crime."

Which immediately reminded me of similar quotation.

"This is no time to make new enemies....." - Voltaire.

Why do I need to sign the petition, no one has ever accused me of libel.

In science it only takes one example, to prove a theory wrong.

Light in, Light out.

Terry Giblin

TrAI
2010-Dec-27, 04:52 AM
Libel reform campain (http://www.libelreform.org/) - Sence about Science (http://www.senseaboutscience.org.uk/index.php/site/project/333/)

How many people who signed the petition, would ever be sued for libel, so why sign?

Freedom of speech, does not give anyone the right to commit libel, to lie or bear false witness, to name only three.

Richard Dawkins (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OqVm-WmFzyU), said "blasphemy, is a victimless crime."

Which immediately reminded me of similar quotation.

"This is no time to make new enemies....." - Voltaire.

Why do I need to sign the petition, no one has ever accused me of libel.

In science it only takes one example, to prove a theory wrong.

Light in, Light out.

Terry Giblin

It seems pretty clear to me that it is not about false statements being exempt from libel actions, but about protection against such actions in cases of actual scientific criticism, and having safeguards against the legal system used frivolously. It has happened that people peddling pseudoscientific, quack, or supernatural products or services have tried to silence and/or ridicule valid criticism and warnings against these by taking court action against the critical persons, so that the public will not be informed about the nature of these services or products. These can be large companies that can easily afford the action, while the accused person is in many cases an individual, and may not have the needed resources for such a struggle.

Even if someone is cleared of the charges of libel, this person still has suffered a loss of time and possibly resources, and so it isn't that strange that people would petition that such litigation should be prevented.

Jens
2010-Dec-27, 06:10 AM
Freedom of speech, does not give anyone the right to commit libel, to lie or bear false witness, to name only three.


I would say the first and third are true, but the second, the idea that it is illegal to tell a lie seems pretty dramatic to me. What about a person complimenting somebody else on a haircut they really think is awful? Or a doctor telling a child he/she will be fine when the injury is serious? What about fiction?

Paul Beardsley
2010-Dec-27, 06:52 AM
I was going to say that most people understand the difference between fiction and lies, but sadly it's not the case (http://www.bautforum.com/showthread.php/110614-Tearing-Apart-Apollo-11-Inaccuracies).

geonuc
2010-Dec-27, 09:47 AM
I support the libel reform effort. As TrAI said, it's not about the freedom to libel but the freedom to criticize.