Sullivan a policeman from Montgomery, Alabama, sued New York Times for alleged untrue facts about him in the ad of New York Times. Alleged false information consisted of several minor inaccurate details about the protests at Alabama State College. Most of them were of minor character (for instance the names of songs were confused or some other minor facts were stated).
Supreme Court found that newspaper really misrepresented some facts, yet it nevertheless held that public official who sued for the damages must prove first of all, that untrue information was intentionally presented as such or that no attempt was actually made to find out whether this information was false or untrue and thus gross neglect to the verification of the truth occurred. However, in the opinion of the Court no such intentions were evident in the actions of New York Times, and thus the case of the Sullivan collapsed. 1
However, is Sullivan defense present in current libel laws of the United Kingdom In order to answer this question one has to study the law that regulates libel and defamatory. Let us consider the most important features of UK libel law.
First of all, one should distinguish between slander and libel. ...
Libel is the statement in print; whereas slander is statement in spoken form (however statement made by radio and TV broadcasters or by some performers can be regarded as libel as well). Libel can b presented in any form, it can be written on bulletin boards, websites and emails 2. As far as the broadcasting is concerned, defamatory statements are regulated by Broadcasting Act of 1990 3, and this act protects broadcasters especially if they make true, honest statements without malice. However, the broadcasting is a unique type of media, as the sound as well as visual materials is transmitted, and a broadcaster might wrongfully point out, or give the impression that they target some persons or companies. As the result of it some people may believe that they were especially targeted and singled out whereas they were not
Also some allegations in defamation can be made when particular text can be on top of some pictures that might induce persons to make some conclusions about particular person or event.
2 Libel, < http://www.media-solicitors.co.uk/libel_Section.htm>
3 Broadcast < http://www.media-solicitors.co.uk/Broadcast_Section.htm>
The same pertains to the radio that can mix music with particular text and thus can give particular impression about the event or another person. 4
If the statements induce person to evince hatred toward particular individual, might entail isolation of the person mentioned (the person can be avoided by some group of people as the result of the libel), damage his reputation and entail some financial difficulties or losses either for business or some groups of people, then the statements can be denoted as defamatory ones5.
However, if the statements might induce people to hate or consider with contempt Royal family, Government,