birketts – Defamation law and social media posts


It is well established that statements made by someone on social media (whether on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, TikTok, Instagram etc.) are subject to the same libel laws as statements published elsewhere. A claimant must show that the words complained of have been published by the defendant and that they are defamatory of the claimant within the meaning of Section 1(1) of the Defamation Act 2013 (discussed below). The application by the courts of defamation law to social media posts has evolved, however, into a distinct branch of defamation law. Its distinctive features are explained below.

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