Anonymity, Disclosure and First Amendment Balancing in the Internet Era: Developments in Libel, Copyright, and Election Speech
47 Pages Posted: 1 Nov 2012 Last revised: 18 May 2014
Date Written: October 31, 2012
The Supreme Court has long protected anonymity for speakers and writers under the First Amendment. The Internet enables anonymity for individuals who post writings, download music, and participate in political discussion. However, this poses a challenge for plaintiffs who want to sue anonymous speakers for libel, copyright infringement, or election speech. This article evaluates current legal developments in these areas and makes recommendations about how the law should deal with these different but related areas of anonymous speech.
Keywords: Internet, anonymity, libel, copyright, campaign finance, disclosure, First Amendment
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