Tort or Crime?

Question description

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 questions below:In the Media: Eminem’s Lyrics—Free Speech or Defamation?In 2009, Eminem received the “Best Hip HopVideo” award at the MTV Video Music Awards.The rapper is known for his strong lyricalstyle.Jason DeCrow/Associated PressMarshall Mathers, better known as the rapper Eminem, is the best-sellinghip hop artist of all time. He has sold over 85 million albums, all with the parentaladvisory warning stamped on the front. Drawing inspiration from his own, evidentlydifficult upbringing, Eminem has rapped about his mother, his ex-wife, a formerschoolmate, and even his fans, in his notoriously abrasive style. As a result, he has beeninvolved in numerous lawsuits for defamation.Classmate DeAngelo Bailey sued Eminem in 2002, alleging that he was the subject forthe song “Brain Damage” from Eminem’s 1999 debut album, The Slim Shady LP. “BrainDamage” is about a childhood bully who is physically violent with little Marshall, and itincludes the following lines: “I was harassed daily by this fat kid named DeAngeloBailey. [. . .] [E]very day he’d shove me in the lockers. One day he came in the bathroom[. . .] and beat me into submission.” Although Bailey was working in sanitation when hefiled the million-dollar suit, Bailey claimed that Eminem’s lyrical disparagement costhim a career in music. In 2003, the lawsuit was dismissed in a 14-page ruling, but notwithout Michigan trial judge Deborah A. Servitto finding her own lyrical voice. Infootnote 11 of the order of dismissal, Judge Servitto wrote the following gem: “Toconvey the Court’s opinion to the fans of rap, the Court’s research staff has helped theCourt put the decision into a universally 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 gainBecause 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 trueAnd 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 factTo dismiss is the only acceptable act.”The First Amendment’s protection of the freedom of speech includes certain 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, assertingas fact something that is objectively false would not be protected by the Constitution and would be defamation.Source: 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.

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