Facebook Users Liable For All Comments Under Their Posts, According To Australia High Court

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Gizmodo: Australia’s High Court, roughly the equivalent of the U.S. Supreme Court, has ruled that Facebook users are responsible for the content of complete strangers who post defamatory comments on their posts. The ruling upholds a June 2019 ruling by the Supreme Court of New South Wales, home to Australia’s largest city of Sydney. And it runs counter to how virtually everyone thinks about liability on the internet.

The High Court’s ruling on Wednesday is just a small part of a larger case brought against Australian news outlets, including the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, and The Australian, among others, by a man who said he was defamed in the Facebook comments of the newspapers’ stories in 2016. The question before the High Court was the definition of “publisher,” something that isn’t easily defined in Australian law. From Australia’s ABC News: “The court

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