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Will George Zimmerman regret Hannity interview?
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2012/12/10/will-george-zimmerman-regret-hannity-interview/ ^

Posted on 12/10/2012 4:17:04 PM PST by MNDude

Last July, George Zimmerman sat down with Sean Hannity of Fox News for a multi-topic and much-viewed interview. The discussion went into minute detail on Zimmerman’s deadly encounter with Trayvon Martin, from the moment he spotted Martin to the initial violence to his reflections on the whole thing: “I feel it was all God’s plan,” Zimmerman told Hannity.

As it gears up to defend itself, NBC Universal is all but certain to mount a familiar argument. Zimmerman, it will likely contend, is a “public figure” for the purposes of the lawsuit. Under defamation law, those whom the court terms “public figures” bear a heightened burden of proof when bringing a libel case against a news outlet. They must prove that the outlet acted knowingly to spread falsehoods or with reckless disregard of the truth — a standard known to lawyers as “actual malice.” Regular folks — non-public figures, that is — have much less burden to prevail in a libel action; they need prove only that the news outlet acted with negligence or carelessness. The spirit behind the bifurcated standard in libel cases is to “free criticism of public officials from the restraints imposed by the common law of defamation.”

As evidence that Zimmerman has thrust himself into controversy, Tobin cites his television appearance — the Hannity thing, that is — plus the Web site that promotes his viewpoints, not to mention his legal team’s use of the media during the controversy. “There’s a very strong case to be made that he’s a public figure,” says Tobin.

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS:
KEYWORDS: news; sourcetitlenoturl; trayvonmartin; zimmerman
I kind of thought he was being dumb getting interviewed. I guess he is a democrat after all...
1 posted on 12/10/2012 4:17:15 PM PST by MNDude
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To: MNDude

I would look at the network’s reporting prior to the Hannity appearance. The damage was done *prior* to any public figure argument IMHO.


2 posted on 12/10/2012 4:21:43 PM PST by Tench_Coxe
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To: MNDude

Absolutely! As a Prosecutor of 25 years, I was stunned his atty let him do it (unless client insisted.) There is no upside to it.


3 posted on 12/10/2012 4:24:52 PM PST by RIghtwardHo
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To: MNDude

He’s a public figure in large part because of the publicity the NBC libelous “news” program generated. If that lets NBC off the hook, the law really is an ass.


4 posted on 12/10/2012 4:27:51 PM PST by USFRIENDINVICTORIA
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To: MNDude; All
Considering NBC already admitted publicly that they altered the tape and fired people involved....NBC is already on shaky ground.

And the WaPo is racist anyway...their comments are alwaya pro No Limit N-——

5 posted on 12/10/2012 4:29:20 PM PST by SeminoleCounty (Seems that the ones who understand little about the economy are economists)
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To: MNDude
I think the 'fair game public figure' viewpoint doesn't take into consideration a pending trial. Not all public figures are awaiting trial. When NBC willfully characterized Zimmerman as a racist (public figure or not), they also prejudiced/tainted a jury. Zimm should sue NBC for jury tampering as well.

For the NBC's despicable act (tape edit), they should pay $$$ MILLIONS $$$ for INTENTIONALLY portraying Zimmerman a racist. Only an idiot would believe the tape edit was an accident.

6 posted on 12/10/2012 4:30:30 PM PST by Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America (IMPEACH OBAMA)
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To: MNDude

Despite what NBC wants people to believe. It is possible to libel or slander a public figure.

They should know this as they were at the center of one of the largest slander cases involving their editing a test to make GM trucks appear unsafe.


7 posted on 12/10/2012 4:33:29 PM PST by Bogey78O (We had a good run. Coulda been great still.)
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To: MNDude

Huh? Lawyers can be so stupid. Was Zimmerman a public figure before NBC made up lies about him? I guess he’s a public figure by now!


8 posted on 12/10/2012 4:38:04 PM PST by Mamzelle
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To: USFRIENDINVICTORIA

I agree.

He could say he was baffled why the media was so bias towards him in every area and why they were out to lynch him when he was the victim. And how the usual suspects showed up and they, along w/the media, tried to make this into something it wasn’t. He could/should swing it around and point all the blame on the media for his life being in danger and making this into sensationalism instead of reporting the news.

I *think* he had a different lawyer at that time.


9 posted on 12/10/2012 4:51:24 PM PST by presently no screen name
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To: MNDude
Will George Zimmerman regret Hannity interview?


10 posted on 12/10/2012 5:04:17 PM PST by Old Sarge (We are officially over the precipice, we just havent struck the ground yet...)
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To: Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America

I would think that it would matter the circumstances under which Zimmerman became a “public figure”. It’s not like he shot St. Treyvon thinking to himself that “if I kill this guy I’ll be famous”. It’s not like Paris Hilton making a sex tape and basically looking to make a career of it.

Zimmerman shot Trayvon to keep himself alive and the notoriety ensued AFTER NBC ran their hit piece.


11 posted on 12/10/2012 5:10:15 PM PST by Ouderkirk (Democrats...the party of Slavery, Segregation, Sodomy, and Sedition)
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To: USFRIENDINVICTORIA
Exactly. The interview with Hannity happened long after NBC made him a public figure.
12 posted on 12/10/2012 5:18:34 PM PST by TigersEye (Who is John Galt?)
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To: TigersEye

The interview isn’t the problem...The problem is that he shot Obama’s son. This is ALL about race and no people are more racist than blacks.


13 posted on 12/10/2012 5:21:31 PM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: MNDude

Idiotic premise that seeks to ignore relevant facts, giving context to the case:

They did, in fact, alter the recordings.

The alteration gives the impression Zimm said one thing when he said something entirely different.
NBC did fire someone for journalistic fraud.

That fraud did malign Zimm and resulted in being a very hated man who committed this act out racism and an insane desire pretending to be a policeman.

Get out yer checkbook ...


14 posted on 12/10/2012 5:31:25 PM PST by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously, you won't live through it anyway)
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To: MNDude
James Beasley, Zimmerman’s attorney in the case, argues that Zimmerman “didn’t thrust himself into the public light,” thus preserving his status as a private citizen. “Defendants [media outlets] try to make everyone a public figure…The press can’t create a monster and then say because this person’s now out, he’s a public figure.”

I think that about answers it.

15 posted on 12/10/2012 5:43:45 PM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: MNDude

Being labeled a public figure raises the bar for defamation, but public figures can and have been found to be defamed.


16 posted on 12/10/2012 5:56:07 PM PST by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: MNDude

Being labeled a public figure raises the bar for defamation, but public figures can and have been found to be defamed.


17 posted on 12/10/2012 5:56:10 PM PST by piytar (The predator-class is furious that their prey are shooting back.)
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To: MNDude

One could argue that he became a public figure as a result of their illegal actions. At the time, he was unknown.


18 posted on 12/10/2012 6:05:04 PM PST by tired&retired
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To: Ouderkirk

Geroge Zimmerman was a private citizen , involved in an incident where a homicide occurred .
Police investigated , and didn’t charge him any criminal charges ; he was covered by existing Florida ‘Stand your Ground’ law .
A week later , the indicdent was deemed a racial bias by the media , especially by NBC media . They showed youthful outdated photos of Travon Martin , and current jailhouse photos of adult Geroge Zimmerman .
Enter the NBC ‘doctored ‘ statement, selectively and intentionally misquoted from the 911 tapes , and the rest of the liberal media followed like sheeple . Each of the other media proceeded to make increasingly more outragious racial bias claims ,which were initially prompted by the NBC ‘doctored ‘ statement.

The fact of the matter is that George Zimmerman was a private citizen before NBC created a media circus .
Should Zimmerman made any public statement on Hannity , in hind sight , probably not ; but up until that time he was vilified and crucified by the media , and never given an opportunity to explain his actions .

Don’t forget that Zimmerman and his extended family were recieveing ‘death threats’ not just from his community , but also from arround the Country , and even a political commentary by the President , himself.
Zimmerman was a private citizen before the NBC media turned him into a public figure.
Prior to the rekindled legal attack on Zimmerman , the discussion in that community was about the ‘Stand your Ground ‘ law ; NBC jingo journalism changed all that .


19 posted on 12/10/2012 6:07:49 PM PST by Tilted Irish Kilt
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To: MNDude

NBC Universal is all but certain to mount a familiar argument. Zimmerman, it will likely contend, is a “public figure”
***He certainly wasn’t a public figure beforehand and he doesn’t seem to have pursued being a public figure.


20 posted on 12/10/2012 6:29:41 PM PST by Kevmo ("A person's a person, no matter how small" ~Horton Hears a Who)
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To: Tilted Irish Kilt
The fact of the matter is that George Zimmerman was a private citizen before NBC created a media circus .

Not only was NBC responsible for making him a pubic figure if they had reported the story honestly and without intentional bias that would not have been enough to make him a public figure. It was only because of their lies and distortions that he became well known.

I suggest that an additional lawsuit be filed against NBC for having their lawyer cynically attempt to libel and slander him again by using their own malfeasance against him. Ask for another $10 million dollars on top of whatever they're asking in the first suit.

21 posted on 12/10/2012 6:44:11 PM PST by TigersEye (Who is John Galt?)
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To: MNDude
Sue ABC too! Sue 'em all!

22 posted on 12/10/2012 6:48:18 PM PST by wolficatZ (Hey blue states....Got Food?)
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To: USFRIENDINVICTORIA
Didn't he go on Hannity to try to clear up the lies NBC spread about him? I don't remember the timing but I thought he went on after they attacked his character and reputation.
23 posted on 12/10/2012 8:21:46 PM PST by peeps36 (America is being destroyed by filthy traitors in the political establishment)
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To: MNDude

He wasn’t a public figure when NBC published fraudulently edited excerpts of his 911 call. THEY (Sharpton and the MSM) made him a ‘public figure.’


24 posted on 12/10/2012 8:29:40 PM PST by EDINVA
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To: tired&retired
One could argue that he became a public figure as a result of their illegal actions.

Exactly -- what the public knew of him was what ABCNNBCBS figured they wanted them to know.

25 posted on 12/10/2012 9:46:36 PM PST by Uncle Chip
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To: MNDude
With Hair-do Hannity and Zimmerman on the air together, there were nearly 100 total IQ points on display.

Note to Zimmerman: speak after your case is thrown out, or you are acquitted. Stop the "victim" nonsense. Try this, "Sorry, the kid screwed up, just my bad luck to have to be the guy who stopped him."

26 posted on 12/12/2012 1:57:14 PM PST by Kenny Bunk (Say, whatever happened to Reggie Love?)
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