An Edmonton man has been ordered to pay $50,000 in damages to anti-hate crusader Richard Warman, who was targeted for death in a series of vile Internet postings.
The threats posted by William Grosvenor, a middle-aged stamp dealer, were 'vicious, profane and extreme,' Ontario Superior Court Judge Lynn Ratushny concluded in a ruling released this week.
The full judgement is here. My favorite bit, from Botiuk vs. Toronto Free Press Publications Ltd., is this definition of a defamatory publication: Note how similar the language is to section 13 of the Human Rights Act:
(13).1 It is a discriminatory practice for a person or a group of persons acting in concert to communicate telephonically or to cause to be so communicated, repeatedly, in whole or in part by means of the facilities of a telecommunication undertaking within the legislative authority of Parliament, any matter that is likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt by reason of the fact that that person or those persons are identifiable on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination.
This makes sense if you consider hate speech (and I have heard it described this way) as defamation against groups. But, since a number of people have made the argument that the language of (13).1 is hopelessly vague, it also begs the question: how is that vague if the concept of defamation is clear? Speechys?...Anyone??
Also, got my first look at Shaidle's The Tyranny of Nice. A review may follow eventually but, at a mere 98 pages, it very much looks like a publication some lawyer took a pair of garden shears too (severely clipped, in other words). Most of defamatory material on Lucy and Warman and Kinsella is missing. There's nothing, for example, re Kinsella's alleged superfluous 3rd nipple. In fact, I can't find any reference to Warren at all (although I have admittedly only glanced at my new E-book). And nothing about me! That really hurts. Anyway, what is left seems a boring cut-and paste of bowdlerized versions of blog posts you've probably already read. Like porn with the screw scenes marked over with red ink.