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Republication and News Reporting 

Ethical and Legal Considerations

Annette Flanagin

A publisher can be held liable for republishing a defamatory statement. For example, if a publisher reprinted a defamatory statement about a public figure knowing that the statement was false, the publisher could be held liable. Similarly, if the republished false statement was about a private figure, the publisher could be held liable for defamation even if the statement was published without knowledge of its falsity (ie, through negligence). Under the privilege of “fair reporting,” an author can repeat a previously published defamatory statement if it is part of official proceedings (eg, a congressional debate or press conference) as long

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