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Slander and Libel Law interpretation

truthisfree

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I have just started writing a novel about a story I have been researching in the west of Ireland, it is a little like a modern day version of "The Field" and as I know there are quite a lot of people familiar with the law here I thought I would ask for advice.

I want to keep the skeleton of the story as close as possible to the events that took place over those years as an historical record but as some of the people are still alive I do not wish to be sued for slander or libel.

Is it as simple as merely changing all names of people involved, or is it more complex....?

Yes I am unashamedly looking for free advice...:oops:




(Apologies to mods if this is in the wrong forum, put it in chat or zoo if you think it belongs there)
 


drummed

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Tell us what you plan to say about these people so we can get a feel for the situation you face.
 
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Its about Identification, you`re correct about changing the names but if the people can still be identified from what you write then they have a case against you.
 

GDPR

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Yep. Change enough so that they can't be reasonably identified from your storey.
 

drummed

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Yep. Change enough so that they can't be reasonably identified from your storey.
Lets hear the story and we'll decide if we can identify them.
 

Ardillaun

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In addition to disguising the characters, you'd be better off creating new names for the town and county a la Hardy which would be fun as well as putting more legal insulation in.
 

Bill

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I have just started writing a novel about a story I have been researching in the west of Ireland, it is a little like a modern day version of "The Field" and as I know there are quite a lot of people familiar with the law here I thought I would ask for advice.

I want to keep the skeleton of the story as close as possible to the events that took place over those years as an historical record but as some of the people are still alive I do not wish to be sued for slander or libel.

Is it as simple as merely changing all names of people involved, or is it more complex....?

Yes I am unashamedly looking for free advice...:oops:




(Apologies to mods if this is in the wrong forum, put it in chat or zoo if you think it belongs there)
have you thought about killing them
 

truthisfree

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Its about Identification, you`re correct about changing the names but if the people can still be identified from what you write then they have a case against you.
Yes, I see what you mean....that's food for thought....identified...as in how a Judge would rule if presented with such a case....so I naturally change place-names...Physical descriptions.....and thanks for answering...:)

Would it be way easier to have a writer friend in the States publish it under one of his many writing Pseudonyms? In which case if I did how close to the real story can I go.....everything written is 100% factual btw...
 
R

Ramps

The beneficiaries of 'The Field' will have an airtight case against you....
 

drummed

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The beneficiaries of 'The Field' will have an airtight case against you....
Will now anyway as he just published a declaration that he's plagiarised that work.
 
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Yes, I see what you mean....that's food for thought....identified...as in how a Judge would rule if presented with such a case....so I naturally change place-names...Physical descriptions.....and thanks for answering...:)

Would it be way easier to have a writer friend in the States publish it under one of his many writing Pseudonyms? In which case if I did how close to the real story can I go.....everything written is 100% factual btw...
People can still be perused in other countries for defamation, Remember you are writing a book I presume to be published? The Publishers may have a US office that could be sued regardless.

Its not worth the hassle of a court case, It would be much easier as others have suggested to change the names and places and even to the extent of a different town and county. You have to insulate yourself from potential libel claims, The moral is, If someone can identify themselves or another then you are open to be sued.
 

truthisfree

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In addition to disguising the characters, you'd be better off creating new names for the town and county a la Hardy which would be fun as well as putting more legal insulation in.
Tbh I have a very hard time keeping myself to the main facts of the story....I wander off into fantasy easily but I have never tried anything based on facts before.....
 

Idigress

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If you're intent on getting the information from an online forum, I'd advise going on Boards.ie. Legal section there has lots of posters who seem well-informed.
 

Watcher2

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I have just started writing a novel about a story I have been researching in the west of Ireland, it is a little like a modern day version of "The Field" and as I know there are quite a lot of people familiar with the law here I thought I would ask for advice.

I want to keep the skeleton of the story as close as possible to the events that took place over those years as an historical record but as some of the people are still alive I do not wish to be sued for slander or libel.

Is it as simple as merely changing all names of people involved, or is it more complex....?

Yes I am unashamedly looking for free advice...:oops:


(Apologies to mods if this is in the wrong forum, put it in chat or zoo if you think it belongs there)
Slander and libel have a common defense - if its "fair comment" then it cant be slander or libel. Slander and libel are different. Libel is the written form of slander. Change the names and place names and maybe even the era.
 

Sister Mercedes

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Tbh I have a very hard time keeping myself to the main facts of the story....I wander off into fantasy easily but I have never tried anything based on facts before.....
I've dabbled in writing too, but I find facts difficult as you can do your head in trying to get things as accurate as possible, when truth is you don't know what two people said in a room together unless you were actually there.

Whereas with fiction, you can just drop a meteorite on someone if you don't want them in the next chapter.
 

GDPR

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Slander and libel have a common defense - if its "fair comment" then it cant be slander or libel. Slander and libel are different. Libel is the written form of slander. Change the names and place names and maybe even the era.
Definitely the era.

There is no distinction made between slander and libel now - there is simply the tort of defamation.

Keep up to date ...
 

Sister Mercedes

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Slander and libel have a common defense - if its "fair comment" then it cant be slander or libel. Slander and libel are different. Libel is the written form of slander. Change the names and place names and maybe even the era.
They're both called Defamation nowadays in Irish law.
 

truthisfree

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Joined
Jul 16, 2009
Messages
6,255
Slander and libel have a common defence - if its "fair comment" then it cant be slander or libel. Slander and libel are different. Libel is the written form of slander. Change the names and place names and maybe even the era.
AH yes, this is what I am interested in.....Fair comment....as in "She was a overweight mean spirited woman that you could know when conversing with her that she was sizing you up the whole time with those beady dark eyes, and not for your benefit!"
:D
 


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