The case involved a former Cincinnati Bengals cheerleader.
On Monday, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit reversed (PDF) an online libel case and annulled the award of hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages. The court found that the site was protected under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which bars website liability from material created by its users.
The case, known as Sarah Jones v. Dirty World Entertainment Recordings LLC et al., concerns a website known as TheDirty.com. That site allows users to upload anonymous comments, photos, and videos that are almost always of a gossip-minded and salacious nature.
Between October 2009 and January 2010, Sarah Jones, a former cheerleader for the Cincinnati Bengals football team, was the target of a number of posts on the site. The first post provided a photo of her with Shayne Graham, then a kicker with the Bengals. The post alleged that Jones had “slept with every other Bengal Football player. This girl is a teacher too!! You would think with Graham’s paycheck he could attract something a little easier on the eyes Nik!”
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