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The ‘true story’ on fake news: Part one

One of the most newsworthy issues of 2016 was news itself - or rather ‘fake news’ and its impact on certain events. Accurate news is vital to democracy and the explosive growth of fake news is cited by many as a threat. In the first part of a two-part series, Sheldon Burshtein, Partner at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP, considers what ‘fake news’ really is, and looks at it from the viewpoint of Canadian law.

What is fake news?

Fake news is a fictitious report relating to current events that is fabricated, and often titled misleadingly, with the deliberate purpose of deceiving users and motivating them to disseminate the report1. Fake news is patently false and is created and presented in a way meant to deceive consumers into thinking that it is real2. Deliberate and deceptive falsity is at the heart of fake news. Fake news is conceived, written, published and disseminated for the purpose of swaying public opinion, in many cases towards the far political right3. In most cases, the purpose is purely the generation of advertising revenue4. One definition of fake news references conscious total falsity for an economic motive5. Authors, publishers and distributors of fake news are often anonymous or pseudonymous.

Although fake news is widely understood to refer to fabricated accounts that are meant to spread virally online6, the meaning of the term is often misused7 to refer to erroneous news, propaganda, satire and even facts with which someone disagrees8. Misleading or out-of-context information does not constitute fake news if it is not wholly fabricated or if it is included within a news report that reports factual events9. A legitimate news outlet that makes an error in reporting does not author fake news. A journalist may sometimes lack necessary facts, be misled by a source, or choose poor wording to convey a news story. Erroneous reporting does not involve an intention to deceive, nor does it imply the complete fabrication of a story10.

Fake news is also distinguishable from propaganda, which is misleading or highly biased information that is specifically designed to confirm or promote a particular ideological viewpoint11. Propaganda generally originates from politically motivated actors with the intention of driving public discussion12. Propaganda is not always completely fabricated or always designed to appear as legitimate news. However, propaganda may be presented as fake news13.

Fake news is disseminated on websites, on social media pages and accounts, and by those who share or aggregate fake and other news. Some websites and social media pages and accounts are designed to spread information presented through a partisan or biased lens to promote a particular political view or to engage users on social media platforms14. Most purveyors of fake news do not share fake news exclusively, but instead share some combination of fake news and other types of content. Some disseminators deliberately attempt to spread fake news stories, while others may share fake news without realising that it is false.

Fake news is often accompanied by a sensationalised headline that presents a misleading or warped sense of the article, called ‘clickbait15.’ The purpose of clickbait is to entice users to click on the headline, most often to trigger revenues for authors and publishers from the advertising placed adjacent to the articles. Clickbait itself does not necessarily constitute fake news, as such headlines or accompanying posts can be technically factually true even if misleading16.

Other issues are posed by fake news websites that are designed to look like websites of legitimate news organisations, such as mainstream publishers or broadcasters, but that display fake news or false native advertising designed to look like real news articles17. Increasingly, fake news websites are used in misleading advertising18. Often, such websites are located at domain names that are confusingly similar to those of reputable news organisations19, such as AbcNews.com.co, which has no relation to ABC News20, or at domain names like those of traditional news publishers, such as NationalReport.net.

In some cases, operators of spoofed websites that replicate the websites of major publishing, broadcasting and online businesses are able to place advertising inventory of legitimate advertisers and generate artificial hits through fake internet users in the form of bots21. One ring used more than half a million fake users and about quarter of a million fake websites impersonating thousands of news and content publishers to generate millions of dollars per day22. There are even websites that permit or encourage the creation of fake news. For example, one now defunct website23 populated names and other data of real people provided by a user to generate a pre-authored story about sexual misconduct which was then displayed on a newspaper-like page with an authoritative-looking masthead, weather graphics, byline and other indicia of a legitimate newspaper24.

What is the relevance of fake news?

Fake news has existed for centuries, as evidenced by reference to ‘false news or tales’ in the Statute of Westminster enacted in the United Kingdom in 127525. Hyper-partisans spread false news for centuries and supermarket tabloids have long published “on the margins of civil discourse26.”

Most false news is neither written by professional journalists nor verified or edited. Professional journalists are trained through formal education and/or newsroom training27 and comply with codes of conduct and ethics28. Mainstream traditional media operators have editorial policies and editors29, which provide for the oversight, verification, editing and balance of news30. Professional journalists focus on facts as the basis of news stories31, although even traditional news organisations have had challenges with the truth32. Digital-only media is, to a great extent, journalistically under developed33. Digital news has been said to be less complete, nuanced and authentic, while more sensational, staged and negative34.

The distribution of, and access to, fake news has increased dramatically with the growth of bloggers35 and other social media. A 2016 survey found that 62% of adults in the United States receive their news on Facebook and other social media platforms36. Another 2016 survey found that people who identify Facebook as a major source of news are more likely to view fake news as more accurate than those who rely less on Facebook for news37. The latter survey also revealed that 75% of adults in the United States believe fake news headlines38.

The impact of fake news is increased because it can easily go viral through links, ‘Shares,’ ‘Likes’ and re-tweets. Viral fake news stories outperform real news on Facebook39. A story may make its way to social media and several websites. A few news websites may then repeat it and suggest in a headline that the story is true or use language, like ‘reportedly.’ Once given a semblance of credibility, the story is repeated by other news websites, which link back to the original publication40.

In many cases, the outrageous nature of fake news is a major contributor to the speed and scope of its viral spread41. Another 2016 survey revealed that about one quarter of Americans shared fake news42. A significant portion of these sharers knew that the story was false when they shared it43. The survey confirmed the relevance of fake news in the 2016 presidential election44. However, another study concluded that fake news was not determinative of the election results45. Fake news is not limited to the United States. For example, a Canadian political campaign admitted to posting fake news46. Apps are being developed to identify fake news47. Some major internet players have implemented strategies to reduce their involvement in the dissemination of fake news. This is being done despite the positions consistently taken by such operators that they are not publishers or broadcasters that present content but act more like interactive cable television operators that transmit content48. For example, in 2016, Google started prohibiting websites that feature misrepresentative content from using its advertising network49, although it later retreated from the fake news restriction in its Advertising Policy50. Google is testing a ‘fact-check’ tag in some news pages to help readers find fact checked content51.

In 2016, Facebook revised its algorithm to prioritise news stories posted by a user’s ‘Friends’ over the ‘Instant Articles’ posted by recognised publishers52. The resulting spread on Facebook of false news caused Facebook to amend its Audience Network Policy to ban advertising that includes fake news53. Facebook is also testing, initially only in the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada, tools to enable a user to flag content as a ‘fake news story54.’ An article that is deemed false by one of a group of fact checking organisations55 that are members of the International Fact-Checking Network is tagged with the term ‘Disputed by 3rd Party Fact-Checkers56.’ However, some say that merely labeling fake news as false is likely not enough to address the problem57.

Some say that the epidemic of fake news has ushered in what has been described as the ‘post-truth’ era for internet platforms58. Others say that fake news may strike at the very essence of democracy59. A 2016 survey indicates that 45% of Americans think that the Government should take responsibility for preventing fake news60. Many have called for specific laws61.

However, others say that a prohibition on fake news would be an unjustified limitation on free speech62. Further, some organisations that are concerned with limitations on expression in jurisdictions that may not permit free speech actively campaign to eliminate or prevent laws against fake news for fear that such laws may impose an obligation on journalists to prove the truth of what they report63.

How does Canada address fake news?

In Canada, the federal Charter of Rights and Freedoms (the ‘Charter’) provides for broad rights of speech64. It is difficult to imagine a guaranteed right that is more important to Canadian democratic society than the freedom of expression65. Even before the Charter was enacted, it was said that only sedition, obscenity66 and criminal libel67 were exempted from free speech68. Civil defamation and hate speech69 are also exempted70.

Even fake news may be protected under the Charter71. Over 20 years before online fake news surfaced, in responding to an argument that false information should be prohibited, the Supreme Court of Canada said: “[…] The first difficulty results from the premise that deliberate lies can never have value. Exaggeration - even clear falsification - may arguably serve useful social purposes linked to the values underlying freedom of expression […] [For example, a doctor, in order to persuade people to be inoculated against a burgeoning epidemic, may exaggerate the number or geographical location of persons potentially infected with the virus […] (other examples deleted by author).

All of this expression arguably has intrinsic value in fostering political participation and individual self-fulfillment. To accept the proposition that deliberate lies can never fall under [the right of freedom of expression in the Charter] would be to exclude statements such as the examples above from the possibility of constitutional protection. I cannot accept that such was the intention of the framers of the Constitution72.”

Common law defamation

A defamation claim may be available for false news which targets an individual or a corporation73, as opposed to a group74. Although other than in the province of Québec, defamation is a common law action, a provincial statute may be relevant to a claim75. To succeed in an action for defamation at common law, a target must establish that:

• a statement is defamatory;

• the statement refers to the target, even if the target is not named; and

• the statement is published or communicated to at least one person other than the target76.

If these elements are established on a balance of probabilities, falsity and damage are presumed77. A communication is defamatory if it tends to lower the target’s reputation in the estimation of right thinking members of society, to expose a person to hatred, contempt or ridicule, or otherwise to deter persons from associating or dealing with them78. The standard for evaluating the statement is a reasonably thoughtful and informed individual79. The communication must refer to the target or lead reasonable people who know the target to the conclusion that it refers to the target80. There is no requirement for malice81 or serious harm. An online post may be defamatory82.

Publication may be direct or indirect. One is not responsible for repetition or republication by others unless:

• that person implicitly or expressly requests or authorises someone to communicate the statement to others83;

• the person to whom the original publication was made was under a duty to repeat or publish the statement84; or

• republication is the natural and probable consequence of the original publication85.

Every republication or repetition of a defamatory statement is a separate tort86. Some jurisdictions have a ‘single publication rule,’ in which all communications are treated as having been published on the earliest date of publication for the purpose of the calculation of a limitation period, unless the content is materially changed87. This rule is particularly relevant for viral online republication. The single publication rule has been rejected in Canada88.

Republication on social media, such as Facebook, may be the natural and probable result of a posting89. The structure and architecture of social media networks facilitates such distribution90. This may be even more so for fake news with clickbait. A person is not liable for defamation by hyperlinking to defamatory content without explicit agreement with the content91. If the operator of the website does not edit or comment on a defamatory publication, a link is not considered a publication and is therefore, without more, not defamatory92.

At common law, the primary defences are truth, fair comment, privilege and responsible communication. Truth, or justification, is an absolute defence to defamation93. For the common law defence, the statement need only be substantially true in the setting, context and circumstances94. The truth defence is generally not applicable to fake news.

The defence of fair comment is available for a statement of opinion, which includes any deduction, inference, conclusion, criticism, judgment, remark or observation that is generally incapable of proof95. To qualify as fair comment, the statement must be:

• on a matter of public interest;

• based on fact;

• recognisable as comment, although it can include inferences of fact;

• an opinion that any person could honestly express on the proved facts; and

• not actuated by express malice96.

The factual foundation of the opinion must be properly disclosed or sufficiently indicated unless the facts are so notorious as to be already understood by the audience97. Even a hyperlink to the factual basis is insufficient unless the link is accompanied by a notice that the linked material contains facts relevant to the opinion98.

Responsible communication on a matter of public interest may avoid liability where the publisher acts responsibly in researching and reporting on the matter by diligently trying to verify the statement having regard to all the relevant circumstances99. The defence is not limited to professional journalists but extends to anyone who publishes material in the public interest100.

To be a matter of public interest, the matter must invite public attention, or be about something which the public, or a segment of the public, has some substantial concern because it affects the welfare of citizens, or be one to which considerable public notoriety or controversy has attached101. Public interest is not confined to government and political matters, nor is it necessary that the target be a public figure102.

A number of factors may aid in determining whether a statement is made responsibly, including:

• the seriousness of the allegation;

• the public importance of the matter;

• the urgency of the matter;

• the status and reliability of the source;

• whether the target’s side of the story was sought and accurately reported;

• whether the inclusion of the defamatory statement was justifiable; and

• whether the statement’s public interest lay in the fact that it was made rather than its truth103.

Distortion or sensationalism may undermine the defence of responsible communication104. However, the tone of the content is not a factor105. The defence obviates the need for an inquiry into malice106. In most cases, a purveyor of fake news is unlikely to satisfy the test for responsible communication.

In assessing damages for defamation, some common law decisions expressly recognise the potential for greater harm through internet publication because it is instantaneous, seamless, interactive, blunt, borderless, far-reaching, ubiquitous, impersonal and often anonymous107.

Civil law defamation

In Québec, where civil law applies, there is no specific cause of action for defamation. The general codified law of delict108 applies to an interference with reputation109. For there to be liability for such interference, a statement must bring discredit to the target’s reputation from the perspective of a reasonable person110, taking into account all of the relevant circumstances111. The statement may be either malicious or the result of simple negligence without any intent to harm112. Truth113, fair comment114 and responsible communication are not per se defences in Québec but are all factors that are assessed in the contextual matrix to determine liability115. Québec courts also consider the impact of publication on the internet as an element in the factual matrix116.

Negligent communication

A cause of action exists for negligent communication117. The negligence arises from a failure to be careful while communicating118. There is no need to prove an absence of good faith in making the statement119. It is sufficient if a statement is made without reasonable cause120. The harm must go beyond reputation and needs to reflect broader personal and economic harm121. The potential defences to a defamation claim are not available in a negligence action122.

As a species of the tort of negligence, negligent communication is based largely on the close relationship between the author or publisher of the statement and the target123. The relationship requires sufficient proximity between the parties so as to impose a duty of care on the author or the publisher for the protection of the target124. Absent such a relationship between the author or publisher and the target of a careless, but not malicious, publication of a false report, there is no liability for negligence125. There is no duty of care in negligence between a publisher and the subject of its reports126. The requirement for a close relationship between an author or publisher and its target is generally not present in a fake news situation. The removal of a blogger’s membership in the press gallery of a provincial legislature for the publication of fake news was upheld by a court127.

The second part of this article will consider other legal issues relating to ‘fake news’ in Canadian law, and will report on the ‘true news.’

Sheldon Burshtein Partner

sheldon.burshtein@blakes.com

Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP, Toronto

© 2017 Sheldon Burshtein. Sheldon is a Partner of Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP and practices intellectual property and technology law in its Toronto, Ontario, Canada office. The author acknowledges the comments of his Partner Paul Schabas on a draft of this article. This article is adapted from a section in the soon to be published 2017 update to the author’s treatise on Domain Name and Internet Trade-mark Issues, 3 vol.

1. Understanding The Fake News Universe: A Guide To Fake News Terminology,’ Media Matters, 15 December 2016.

2. Ibid.

3. Editorial, The New York Times, 20 November 2016.

4. For example, Silverman, C., & L. Alexander, ‘How Teens in the Balkans are Duping Trump Supporters with Fake News,’ BuzzFeed News, 3 November 2016.

5. Silverman, C., Lies Damn Lies and Viral Content: How News Websites Spread (and Debunk) Online Rumors, Unverified Claims and Misinformation, Tow Center for Digital Journalism, 2015.

6. Peters, J.P., ‘Wielding Claims of ‘Fake News, Conservatives Take Aim at Mainstream Media,’ The New York Times, 26 December 2016.

7. Sullivan, M., ‘Feds Should Stay out of Fight Against Fake News,’ The Washington Post, 16 December 2016.

8. Ibid.

9. ‘Understanding The Fake News Universe: A Guide To Fake News Terminology.’

10. Ibid.

11. Ibid.

12. Ibid.

13. Ibid.

14. Ibid.

15. Ibid.

16. Ibid.

17. For example, F.T.C. v. Beony International LLC, no. 1:11-cv-02448 (N.D.Ill., 2011) (unreported) and F.T.C. v. DLXM LLC, no. 11-cv-01889 (E.D.N.Y., 2011) (stipulated order) (unreported).

18. McCoy, T., ‘Two Guys with Laptops Make Gigabucks Creating Fake News,’ supra, at note 2.

19. Lince, T., ‘Hoax News Site Operator Vows “More to Come”; Creates Another Brand Headache,’ World Trademark Review, 23 January 2015.

20. The operator claims that the articles are satire but they generally lack humour, which is a key element of satire: Blackwell, T., ‘The Scourge of the U.S. Election: Fake News, Exploding on Social Media, is Seeping into the Mainstream,’ National Post, 4 November 2016.

21. Goel, V., ‘Russian Cyberforgers Steal Millions a Day with Fake Sites,’ The New York Times, 20 December 2016.

22. Ibid.

23. CHEEZUS.COM: http://www.cheezus.com

24. Goldman, E., ‘Teenager Busted for Creating Fake “News” Story,’ Technology and Marketing Blog, 25 May 2016.

25. Statute of Westminster (UK) 1275, Edw. 1, cap. 34.

26. Public Policy Forum, ‘The Shattered Mirror: News, Democracy and Trust in the Digital Age,’ January 2017. For example, in 1990, a tabloid newspaper published a story about a 96-year-old woman next to the headline ‘World’s oldest newspaper carrier, 101, quits because she’s pregnant! I guess walking all those miles kept me young’: The woman was not pregnant: Peoples Bank & Trust Company of Mountain Home v. Globe International Publishing, Inc., 978 F. 29 1065 (C.A.8, 1992), affirming 786 F. Supp. 791 (W. D. Ark., 1992), certiorari denied, 510 U.S. 93 (1993).

27. Public Policy Forum, ‘The Shattered Mirror: News, Democracy and Trust in the Digital Age,’ supra, at note 26.

28. For example, Society of Professional Journalists, Code of Ethics.

29. Thibodeau v. PEIHRC & Pate, 2016 PEISC 10.

30. Public Policy Forum, ‘The Shattered Mirror: News, Democracy and Trust in the Digital Age.’

31. Ibid.

32. For example The New York Times and Jayon Blair.

33. Public Policy Forum, ‘The Shattered Mirror: News, Democracy and Trust in the Digital Age,’ supra at note 26.

34. Ibid.

35. Thibodeau v. PEIHRC & Pate, supra, at note 29.

36. Gottfried, J. and E. Sheaver, ‘News Use Across Social Media Platforms 2016,’ Pew Research Center, 26 May 2016.

37. An Ipsos poll conducted for BuzzFeed News: Silverman, C., ‘A BuzzFeed News Analysis Found That Top Fake Election News Stories Generated More Total Engagement on Facebook Than Top Election Stories from 19 Major News Outlets Combined,’ BuzzFeed News, 16 November 2016.

38. An Ipsos poll conducted for BuzzFeed News: Silverman, C., and J. Singer-Vine, ‘Most Americans Who See Fake News Believe It, New Survey Says,’ BuzzFeed News, 6 December 2016.

39. An Ipsos poll conducted for BuzzFeed News: Silverman, C., ‘This Analysis Shows How Viral Fake Election News Stories Outperformed Real News on Facebook,’ BuzzFeed News, 16 November 2016.

40. Silverman, C., Lies Damn Lies and Viral Content: How News Websites Spread (and Debunk) Online Rumors, Unverified Claims and Misinformation.

41. Hubbard, S., ‘Why Fake News is an Antitrust Problem,’ Forbes, 10 January 2017.

42. Barthel, M., A. Mitchell and J. Holcomb, ‘Many Americans Believe Fake News Is Sowing Confusion,’ Pew Research Center, 15 December 2016.

43. Ibid.

44. Ibid.

45. Allcott, A., and M. Gentzkow, ‘Social Media and Fake News in the 2016 Election,’ New York University and Stanford University, January 2017.

46. Canadian Press ‘Facebook, Google to Tackle “Fake News” in Canada with New Tools,’ The Toronto Star, 24 January 2017.

47. Swartz, J., ‘Citizen Army Takes on Fight Against Fake News,’ The Toronto Star, 17 December 2016.

48. Public Policy Forum, ‘The Shattered Mirror: News, Democracy and Trust in the Digital Age,’ supra, at note 26.

49. Wingfield, N., M. Isaac and K. Benner, ‘Google and Facebook Take Aim at Fake News Stories,’ The New York Times, 14 November 2016; and Love, J. and K. Cooke, ‘Google, Facebook Move to Restrict Ads on Fake News Sites,’ Reuters, 15 November 2016.

50. Suen, B., and T. Cherry, ‘Google Quietly Removes “Fake News” Language From Its Advertising Policy,’ Media Matters, 12 January 2017.

51. Canadian Press, ‘Facebook, Google to Tackle “Fake News” in Canada with New Tools,’ supra, at note 46.

52. Facebook, ‘Building a Better News Feed for You,’ 29 June 2016.

53. Mosseri, A., ‘News Feed FYI: Addressing Hoaxes and Fake News,’ Facebook Newsroom Blog, 15 December 2016.

54. Ibid; and Canadian Press, ‘Facebook, Google to Tackle “Fake News” in Canada with New Tools,’ supra, at note 46.

55. For example, Poynter International Fact-Checking Network.

56. Mosseri, A., ‘News Feed FYI: Addressing Hoaxes and Fake News,’ supra, at note 53.

57. Burgoyne, A.P. and D.Z. Hambrick, ‘Flagging Fake News and Bad Sources Won’t Work. Thank the Brain,’ Slate, 12 January 2017.

58. Owen, M., ‘2017: Dawn of a Post-Truth Era for Platform Liability?’ Taylor Wessing, 5 December 2016.

59. Killian, K. D., ‘The Threat of Fake News to Our Democracy,’ Psychology Today, 14 December 2016.

60. Barthel, M., A. Mitchell and J. Holcomb, ‘Many Americans Believe Fake News Is Sowing Confusion,’ supra, at note 43.

61. For example, Turley, J., ‘The Real Danger of Fake News,’ http://www.jonathanturley.com

62. For example, Gey, S.G., ‘The First Amendment and the Dissemination of Socially Worthless Untruths,’ 36 Fla. St. U. L. Rev. 1 (2008).

63. For example, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 19, http://www.un.org; and Article 19, ‘Social Media and “Fake News” from a Free Speech Perspective,’ 25 November 2016.

64. For example, Saskatchewan (Human Rights Commission) v. Whatcott, 2013 SCC 11; and Zundel v. The Attorney General of Canada, [1992] 2 S.C.R. 731, reversing (1990), 53 C.C.C. (3d) (Ont. C.A.), per Justices Cory and Iacobucci in dissent; but see contra: majority.

65. For example, Edmonton Journal v. Alberta (Attorney General), [1989] 2 SCR 1326.

66. For example, R. v. Butler, [1992] 1 SCR 452.

67. For example, R. v. Lucas, [1998] 1 SCR 439.

68. For example, Switzman v. Elbing, [1957] SCR 285.

69. For example, Hill v. Church of Scientology, [1995] 2 SCR 1130.

70. For example, Saskatchewan (Human Rights Commission) v. Whatcott, supra, at note 64; and R. v. Keegstra, [1990] 3 S.C.R. 697.

71. Zundel v. The Attorney General of Canada, supra, at note 64.

72. R. v. Zundel, supra, at note 64, per Justice McLachlin, at [1992] 2 S.C.R. 731, 754.

73. For example, Barrick Gold Corp. v. Lopehandia, (2004), 31 C.P.R. (4th) 401 (O.C.A.).

74. Malhab v. Diffusion Métromédia CMR inc., 2011 SCC 9.

75. For example, in Ontario: Libel and Slander Act, S.O. 1990, c. L-12.

76. For example, Grant v. Torstar Corp., 2009 SCC 61, [2009] 3 S.C.R. 640.

77. Ibid.

78. For example, Cherneskey v. Armadale Publishers Ltd., [1979] 1 S.C.R. 1067.

79. For e.g., Colour Your World Corp. v. Canadian Broadcasting Corp, (1998), 38 O.R. (3d) 97 (Ont. C.A.), leave to appeal refused [1998] S.C.C.A. No. 170.

80. For e.g., Arnott v. College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan, [1954] S.C.R. 538.

81. Hill v. Church of Scientology, supra, at note 69.

82. For e.g., Awan v. Levant, 2016 ONCA 970, affirming 2014 ONSC 6890.

83. For e.g., M.D.A. Marine Design Associates Ltd. v. British Columbia Ferry Services Inc., 2008 BCSC 1432; Breeden v. Black, 2012 SCC 19; and Crookes v. Newton, 2011 SCC 47;

84. For example, Speight v, Gosnay, (1891), 60 L.J.Q.B. 231 (Eng.C.A.).

85. For example, Breeden v. Black, supra, at note 83; Crookes v. Newton, supra, at note 83; and Pritchard v. Van Ness, 2016 BCSC 686.

86. For e.g., St. Elizabeth Home Society v. Hamilton, [2015] O.T.C. 1074 (Ont. Sup. Ct. Just), affirmed 2000 ONCA 280.

87. For example, in the United Kingdom, the single publication rule was adopted by the 2013 Defamation Act: Defamation Act 2013, 2013, c. 26, Section 8, changing the common law multiple publication rule that each publication generated a new cause of action: Times Newspaper Ltd. v. United Kingdom, [2009] ECHR 451; and Godfrey v. Demon Internet Ltd., [1999] EWHC 244 (Q.B.); and in the United States, Van Buskirk v. New York Times Co., 325 F. 3d 87 (C.A. 2, 2003), affirming 28 Med. L. Rep. 2525 (S.D.N.Y., 2000); and Canatella v. Van de Kamp, 486 F.3d 1128 (C.A. 9, 2007).

88. For e.g., Carter v. BC Federation of Foster Parents Association, 2005 BCCA 398; and Shtaif v. Toronto Life Publishing Co. Ltd., 2013 ONCA 405.

89. For e.g., Pritchard v. Van Ness, supra, at note 85.

90. Ibid.

91. For e.g., Crookes, v. Newton, supra, at note 83.

92. Ibid.

93. For e.g., Grant v. Torstar Corp., supra, at note 76.

94. Ibid.

95. For e.g., Ross v. New Brunswick Teachers’ Assn., 2001 NBCA 62, 201 D.L.R. (4th) 75; and WIC Radio Ltd. v. Simpson, [2008] 2 S.C.R. 420.

96. For e.g., WIC Radio Ltd. v. Simpson, supra, at note 95.

97. Ibid.

98. Mainstream Canada v. Staniford, 2013 BCCA 341, leave to appeal denied [2013] SCCA No. 332.

99. Grant v. Torstar Corp., supra, at note 76; and Quan v. Cusson, 2009 SCC 62.

100. Grant v. Torstar Corp., supra, at note 76.

101. Ibid.

102. Ibid.

103. Ibid.

104. Ibid.

105. Ibid.

106. Ibid.

107. For e.g., Barrick Gold Corp. v. Lopehandia, supra, at note 73.

108. Civil Code of Québec, Article 1457.

109. For e.g., Prud’homme v. Prud’homme, [2002] 4 S.C.R. 663.

110. Ibid.

111. Ibid.

112. Ibid.

113. Gilles E. Neron Communication Marketing Inc., v. Chambre des notaires du Québec, [2004] 3 S.C.R. 95.

114. Prud’homme v. Prud’homme., supra, at note 109.

115. Ibid.

116. For e.g., Lacroix c. Dicaire, 2005 CanLII 41500 (Que. S.C.).

117. Young v. Bella, 2006 SCC 3.

118. Ibid.

119. Ibid.

120. Ibid.

121. Dinyer-Fraser v. Laurentian Bank, 2005 BCSC 225.

122. Young v. Bella, supra, at note 117.

123. Ibid.

124. Spring v. Guardian Assurance plc, [1994] 3 All E.R. 129 (H.L.); Dinyer-Fraser v. Laurentian Bank, supra, at note 121; and Young v. Bella, supra, at note 117.

125. Guay v. Sun Publishing, [1953] 2 S.C.R. 216.

126. Shtaif v. Toronto Life Publishing Co., supra, at note 88.

127. Thibodeau v. PEIHRC & Pate, supra, at note 29.

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