Thompson v James

Libel and slander – Defamatory words. The claimant had maintained a blog site on which she wrote about the local council and its activities. The defendant was chief executive of that council. The claimant issued proceedings against the defendant alleging libel by him. The defendant counterclaimed that the claimant had written defamatory comments about him in her blog over a period of months. Those comments concerned what the claimant had described as a 'slush fund', pursuant to powers delegated by the council to, among others, the defendant, to initiate and fund libel proceedings by council members. The claim was dismissed and the counterclaim was allowed in part. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, dismissed the claimant's appeal as the judge had given the blog posts their natural and ordinary meaning, which had been an implication of corruption, and that meaning had not been altered by the context of other posts on the blog.

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