Wk 1 Discussion 1

Applying the Law to a Set of Facts

Read the Hypothetical Case Problem #1 at the end of Chapter 1 and respond to these questions:

· If Javier sued Energy-Auto Inc., identify who would be the plaintiff and the defendant.

· In which state or states can the suit be brought?

· Assume that Javier incurred $100,000 in damages.

· Analyze whether the suit can be brought in federal court

· Explain the advantages and disadvantages of federal versus state court for this type of suit.

_____________Case problem below

Case 1. Javier is traveling from his home in New York to Dallas, Texas.While driving through Oklahoma, his brakes fail and he is injured in theensuing crash. Javier wants to sue the maker of his car, Energy-Auto Inc.Energy’s headquarters is in New York. It does not have any dealerships inOklahoma or do any advertising in Oklahoma.

1. In which state or states can the plaintiff sue the defendant?

2. Assume that the plaintiff will sue the defendant for $100,000 in damages.Can the suit be brought in federal court? Explain.

3. If Javier only had relatively minor damage, and was suing for $9,000, couldhe sue in federal court?

4. In a similar situation, a defendant argued that the auto manufacturer couldstill be held liable in Oklahoma, because it was foreseeable that thede

Wk 1 discussion 2

In Chapter 1 of the text you read about the Bailey v. Eminem defamation case where the court held Eminem’s lyrics were protected by the First Amendment. Read the article and view the video (the links are listed under Week 1 Additional Learning Resources Required and Week 1 Multimedia Required) to the Pahler v. Slayer case. Respond to the following questions:

· Did the Pahler court use the same reasoning as used in Bailey v. Eminem?

· Should the court’s decision in Pahler be different because a young girl was murdered?

· Recall the difference between a crime and a tort. Based on these two cases, analyze and discuss whether artists should be held liable for the actions of their fans.

___________course material below
In the Media: Eminem’s Lyrics—Free Speechor Defamation?

In 2009, Eminem receivedthe “Best Hip Hop Video”award at the MTV VideoMusic Awards. Therapper is known for hisstrong lyrical style.

Jason DeCrow/Associated Press

Marshall Mathers, better known as the rapperEminem, is one of the best-selling hip hopartists of all time. He has sold over 85 millionalbums, all with the parental advisory warningstamped on the front. Drawing inspirationfrom his own, evidently difficult upbringing,Eminem has rapped about his mother, his ex-wife, a former schoolmate, and even his fans,in his notoriously abrasive style. As a result, hehas been involved in numerous lawsuits fordefamation.

Classmate DeAngelo Bailey sued Eminem in2002, alleging that he was the subject for thesong “Brain Damage” from Eminem’s 1999debut album, The Slim Shady LP. “BrainDamage” is about a childhood bully who isphysically violent with little Marshall, and itincludes the following lines: “I was harassed daily by this fat kid namedDeAngelo Bailey. [. . .] [E]very day he’d shove me in the lockers. One dayhe came in the bathroom [. . .] and beat me into submission.” AlthoughBailey was working in sanitation when he filed the million-dollar suit,Bailey claimed that Eminem’s lyrical disparagement cost him a career inmusic. In 2003, the lawsuit was dismissed in a 14-page ruling, but notwithout Michigan trial judge Deborah A. Servitto finding her own lyricalvoice. In footnote 11 of the order of dismissal, Judge Servitto wrote thefollowing gem: “To convey the Court’s opinion to the fans of rap, theCourt’s research staff has helped the Court put the decision into auniversally understandable format:

Mr. Bailey complains that his rep is trash. So he’s seeking compensation in the form of cash. Bailey thinks he’s entitled to some monetary gain Because Eminem used his name in vain.

Eminem says Bailey used to throw him around Beat him up in the john, shoved his face in the ground. Eminem contends that his rap is protected By the rights guaranteed by the first amendment.

Eminem maintains that his story is true And that Bailey beat him black and blue. In the alternative he states that his story is phony And a reasonable person would think it’s baloney.

The Court must always balance the rights Of a defendant and one placed in a false light. If the plaintiff presents no question of fact To dismiss is the only acceptable act.”

The First Amendment’s protection of the freedom of speech includescertain speech or communication that might seem to be hurtful,particularly when what is being expressed are opinions or, in this case,opinions as lyrics to a copyrighted song. Of course, asserting as factsomething that is objectively false would not be protected by theConstitution and would be defamation.

Source: http://www.thesmokinggun.com/documents/crime/judge-raps-eminem-accuser

Rock ‘n roll murder: When lyrics lead to violence (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. [Video file] (n.d.). Retrieved from http://digital.films.com/OnDemandEmbed.aspx?Token=12037&aid=18596&loid=16842&Plt=FOD&w=320&h=240&ref

Slayer lawsuit thrown out (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.. (2014, January 24). ABC News. Retrieved from http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/story?id=110372

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