Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Please see your assigned Case Study for the final assignment below.? The assignment sheet and grade rubric have been attached as well Please note: | EssayAbode

Please see your assigned Case Study for the final assignment below.? The assignment sheet and grade rubric have been attached as well Please note:

Please see your assigned Case Study for the final assignment below.  The assignment sheet and grade rubric have been attached as well

Please note:  There's no real city or state implied in this case.  I use Cambridge or others city/university names strictly as fictitious places.  You don't need to look for case law that relates to a specific place.   

Case #6: Libel and Defamation of Character – Attorneys for Defendant 

Unsworth v. Musk 

Posture of the Case: 

In September 2018, a group of young football players became trapped in a Thai underground cave. International attention was given to the situation that became more dire each day the boys were trapped.  British cave diver Vernon Unsworth joined the rescue operation and worked with other skilled divers to free the boys after two weeks. Tech billionaire Elon Musk and SpaceX engineers built a small submarine and shipped it to Thailand to help with the cave rescue. The device was not used and critics, including Unsworth, called it a PR stunt.  After the rescue team rebuffed Musk’s submarine, Musk accused Unsworth of being a pedophile.  Unsworth has filed a defamation suit against Musk in Los Angeles federal court for $75,000. 

Background of the Case: 

After the successful rescue of the footballers in Thailand, Unsworth says Musk “embarked on a PR campaign to destroy” his reputation after becoming angry at an interview he gave to the US television network, CNN. 

Unsworth had told the broadcaster that Musk’s device “had absolutely no chance of working,” that Musk “had no conception of what the cave passage was like” and that Musk could “stick his submarine where it hurts.” 

Vernon Unsworth alleges that Musk falsely accused him on Twitter of being a pedophile and seeks at least $75,000 in damages and a court order preventing Musk from making further allegations.  The diver accuses Musk of “publishing false and heinous accusations of criminality against him to the public” when Musk posted a series of tweets directed at Unsworth on 15 July, calling his claims about the submarine into question and adding: “Sorry pedo guy, you really did ask for it.” At that time, Musk had approximately 22.5 million Twitter followers.  Musk later deleted the Twitter posts and issued an apology stating that he was “just kidding.”  

The diver further alleges that Musk later sent emails to the media site Buzzfeed accusing Unsworth of moving to Thailand to be with a child bride who was about 12 years old and claiming that Unsworth had been removed from the rescue team over allegations of being a pedophile.  Musk also responded to Buzzfeed’s  request for comment by saying, "I suggest that you call people you know in Thailand, find out what's actually going on and stop defending child rapists, you f—— a——." Musk said the email was off the record, but BuzzFeed claimed the publication never agreed to that stipulation. 

As attorneys for Defendant Musk, argue that Musk did not defame Unsworth in his Twitter posts and his emails to Buzzfeed. 

1

COMM 420 Moot Court Rubric. Grade breakdown: Paper 75 pts, Peer evaluations 25

Criteria Unsatisfactory – Beginning Developing Accomplished Exemplary Total

Paper:

I. Intro to case

study

0 -1 points 2-3 points 4 points 5 points /5

Fails to include the

Background and case history.

Incomplete inclusion of the

Background and case history.

Adequate, but incomplete,

inclusion of the Background

and case history.

Complete inclusion of the

Background and case

history.

Analysis:

II. Explain torts

Defamation or

Privacy Law &

III. Rule on the

case

0-14 15-17 points 18-20 points 22-25 points /25

Demonstrates a lack of

understanding and inadequate

analysis of the legal topic.

Insufficient progression of

case law; insufficient citation

of important case law;

Analysis of case study

according to the relevant case

law is superficial and based

on opinions and preferences

rather than court rulings and

legal analysis. Insufficient or

missing conclusion

Demonstrates general

understanding and minimal

analysis of the legal topic.

Minimal progression of case

law; minimal citation of

important case law; Analysis of

case study according to the

relevant case law is basic and

based on minimal court rulings

and legal analysis. Insufficient

conclusion.

Demonstrates solid

understanding and analysis of

the legal topic. Well-

developed and complete

progression of case law; solid

citation of important case law;

Analysis of case study

according to the relevant case

law is well-developed and

reasoned on solid

demonstration of court rulings

and legal analysis. Solid

conclusion. Adequately

compares/contrasts legal

perspectives, counter-

arguments, or opposing legal

arguments positions.

Demonstrates a

sophisticated legal analysis

of the case study. Excellent

progression of case law and

citation of important case

law; Excellent analysis of

case study based on relevant

case law and court rulings/

legal analysis. Well-stated

conclusion. Skillfully

compares/contrasts legal

perspectives, counter-

arguments, or opposing

legal arguments positions.

Quality of

Evidence (Law

cases and legal

analysis

sources)

0-14 points 15-17 points 18-20 points 22-25 points /25

Lacks sufficient case law and

legal analysis sources to

support a legal argument.

Contains numerous factual

mistakes, omissions, or

oversimplifications.

Provides some case law and

legal analysis sources to support

a legal argument. Some sources

may not be relevant, accurate,

and reliable. Contains some

factual mistakes, omissions, or

oversimplifications.

Provides essential, accurate

case law and legal analysis

sources to support a legal

argument. Legal sources that

are mostly relevant, accurate,

and reliable.

Provides compelling and

accurate case law and legal

analysis sources to support a

legal argument. Legal

sources are highly relevant,

accurate, and reliable and

add to the strength of the

case study argument.

2

Criteria Unsatisfactory – Beginning Developing Accomplished Exemplary Total

Writing Quality

& Proper APA

style reference

and in-text

citations

0-9 points 10-13 points 14-17 points 18-20 points /20

Paper shows a below

average/poor writing style

lacking in elements of

appropriate standard English and

following proper APA and Table

of Cases guidelines. Frequent

errors in spelling, grammar,

punctuation, spelling, usage,

and/or formatting.

Paper shows an average

and/or casual writing style

using standard English and

following APA and Table of

Cases guidelines. Some

errors in spelling, grammar,

punctuation, usage, and/or

formatting.

Paper shows above average

writing style and clarity in

writing using standard English

and following APA and Table

of Cases guidelines. Minor

errors in grammar,

punctuation, spelling, usage,

and/or formatting.

Paper is well written and

clear using proper APA and

Table of Cases guidelines

and standard English

characterized by elements of

a strong writing style. Free

from grammar, punctuation,

spelling, usage, or

formatting errors.

Peer Evaluation 0-14 points 15-17 points 18-20 points 22-25 points /25

Fails to provide serious analysis

of peer moot court presentations.

Minimal to no effort to provide

useful feedback to peers.

Provides basic, minimal

serious analysis of peer moot

court presentations. Little

useful feedback provided to

peers.

Provides thoughtful and

serious analysis of peer moot

court presentations. Solid

useful feedback provided to

peers.

Provides thoughtful

excellent analysis of peer

moot court presentations.

Critical, yet fair, feedback

provided to peers to enable

improvement for future

presentations.

TOTAL

POINTS

/100

,

Classic Defamation of Character Cases:

NY Times v. Sullivan, 376 U.S. 254 (1964) https://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/376/254/ A case

in which the Court held that the First Amendment protects freedom of speech and freedom of the press,

even about the conduct of politicians, unless the statements are made with actual malice.

Curtis Publishing v. Butts (1967) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1966/37 A case in which the Court held

that public figures asserting a defamation claim must show that a statement was made "with knowledge

that it was false or with reckless disregard for whether it was false or not," the same standard to which

public officials are held under New York Times v. Sullivan.

Gertz v. Welch (1974) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1973/72-617 Private individuals need only prove

negligence to recover in defamation suits against news media

Time, Inc. v. Firestone (1976) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1975/74-944 Did the Florida court’s

judgment violate Time’s First Amendment protections?

Rosenbloom v. Metromedia Inc. (1970) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1970/66 Should the knowingly and

recklessly false standard for defamatory statements apply to private individuals?

Rosenblatt v. Baer (1965) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1965/38 A case in which the Court held that a

government official has to prove that defamatory statements were made in actual malice to succeed in a

libel action.

Harte-Hanks Communications, Inc. v. Connaughton (1989) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1988/88-10 A

case in which the Court held that a public figure plaintiff in a libel case must prove that the libelous

statement was false or made without any regard for its truth

Milkovich v. Lorain Journal Company (1990) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1989/89-645

Are the statements in the newspaper article constitutionally protected opinions?

Hustler Magazine, Inc. v. Falwell (1987) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1987/86-1278

A case in which the Court ruled that the First Amendment's freedom of speech protection extended to the

making of clearly offensive statements about public figures, so long as such speech could not reasonably

be construed to convey facts about its subject

Additional cases can be found here: https://www.oyez.org/issues/341

,

Some classic Right to Privacy Cases: Griswold v. Connecticut (1965) Supreme Court first recognized the right to privacy Louis Brandeis’ famous (prior to becoming a Supreme Court Justice) co-authored article Harvard Law Review article called "The Right to Privacy," in which he advocated for the "right to be let alone." Expectation of Privacy Standard: The expectation of privacy test, originated from Katz v. United States is a key component of Fourth Amendment analysis. The Fourth Amendment protects people from warrantless searches of places or seizures of persons or objects, in which they have an subjective expectation of privacy that is deemed reasonable in public norms. The test determines whether an action by the government has violated an individual's reasonable expectation of privacy. The Reasonable Expectation of Privacy Test: In Katz, Jutsice Harlan created the Reasonable Expectation of Privacy Test in his concurring opinion. Although it was not formulated by the majority, this test has been the main takeaway of the case. Justice Harlan created a two-part test:

1. an individual has exhibited an actual (subjective) expectation of privacy 2. the expectation is one that society is prepared to recognize as reasonable

If both of these requirements have been met, and the government has taken an action which violates this "expectation," then the government's action has violated the individual's Fourth Amendment rights. Personal Autonomy Standard: U.S. Supreme Court: Historic Right of Privacy-Personal Autonomy Decisions

• Stanley v. Georgia, 394 U.S. 557 (1969) • Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973) • Paris Adult Theatre I v. Slaton, 413 U.S. 49 (1973) • Whalen v. Roe, 429 U.S. 589 (1977) • Bowers v. Hardwick, 478 U.S. 186 (1986) • Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992) • Lawrence v. Texas (2003)

False Light Standard: Cantrell v. Forest City Pub. Co. (1974), https://www.oyez.org/cases/1974/73-5520 publisher can be held liable for known falsehoods in new story Time Inc. v. Hill (1966) https://www.oyez.org/cases/1965/22 Is a publication, containing misrepresentations about the subject of its coverage, protected under the First Amendment's freedom of speech guarantees? Solano v. Playgirl, Inc. (2002) https://www.lexisnexis.com/community/casebrief/p/casebrief-solano-v- playgirl-inc in order to prove a false light claim, plaintiff must show that the defendant implied something false Some states recognize "false light" claims. A person can sue for false light when something highly offensive is implied to be true about them that is actually false.

,

COMM 420, Sp. 22 – Communication Law

Outline for Legal Case Study Paper/Moot Court Arguments

1. Write a paper, approx. 6-8 pages in length that analyzes an assigned case study in communication law. The

paper should include legal citations for sources used.

2. The paper must adhere to acceptable grammar and spelling rules, and must be typed, double-space with

acceptable (no more than 1") margins. Type face may be no larger than 12-point. Points will be deducted for

misspellings and grammatical errors.

3. All papers are due by 11:59 pm on May 16. No late papers will be accepted. No exceptions! They will be

processed and sent to peer reviewers the next day. Please note: If you do not submit a paper, you will not be able to

participate in the Peer jury reviews. Again, no exceptions to this.

4. Papers should investigate the case study as it relates to a fundamental legal principle. An outline for the case

study evaluation should include: Your paper should use this outline format:

I. Introduction to the case study

Explain in your own words the background and history of the case; what’s it about, what’s really going on

with this situation, etc. You can take this from the case study I provided, but you need to explain it in your

own words. Include:

Background

History of the events that led to the lawsuit

II. List and explain the tort standard for this area of law. Don’t just list, be sure you explain each tort.

You did this on the exam and in case studies so this isn’t new

III. Rule on the case – from the perspective of the Plaintiff or Defendant (you’ve been assigned to one

side)

• Apply the current standard of law that explained above

• Be sure to apply all tort standards of the law to your ruling. If you think one doesn’t apply, say that but you also have to explain why it doesn’t relate.

• Use legal citations to support your arguments. Don't forget First Amendment Principles, the 3 C’s, etc. I’ve provided cases for you and there’s a tutorial attached on how to find cases.

• Argue the law/restriction constitutional or unconstitutional?

*Base this on any important cases/case law. In other words, support your arguments — explain

why you came to that conclusion and how your argument is based on legal reasoning.

IV. State why your side should win this case! State your strongest legal arguments based on the

application of the standards you applied above and make a persuasive argument as to why your client

should win the case.

5. You should write this as a paper – do NOT pretend that you’re making argument in a court. This s not an

exercise in oral arguments.

6. Your paper, and your opponent’s paper, will be sent to the peer jurors without your name on it. Jurors will review

your arguments, complete a review form and vote on which side one. The winning paper will receive extra credit

added to their grade.

Important Dates to Mark on Your Calendar!

Paper meeting with Instructor –May 2 and May 9 during class time or by appointment

Moot Court Final Paper due – May 16

Peer/juror reviews due – May 22

How to find Applicable Case Law:

1. Start with your textbook and our class discussions to find cases that support the current tort law in your

area of law.

2. TU’s Cook Library → Databases→

Best one is:

NexisUni→ Cases → Select Federal →…about (enter area of law)→ start with search of all; then restrict to last 5 years→

Search

* You can also search NexisUni for news stories but you need to limit search terms

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