Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Doe v. Gonzaga case brief summary

DOE v. GONZAGA

Facts:
A teacher heard discussion of possible date rape; investigated, reported; guy lost teaching ability as a result of accusation (Q:  privilege defeat publication?)

§  Held:  intra-corporate privilege did not apply to defeat publication requirement

§  Rule—if corporate employee not acting in “ordinary course” of her work publishes defamatory statement (either to another EE or non-EE), there can be liability
·         (1) Each instance of speaking = arguably a publication
·         (2) Univ. argues this isn’t publication b/c intra-corporate privilege (Univ. essentially talking to itself!)

o   Problems:
§  (i) Requires us to have good idea of what’s “ordinary course of business”; and
(ii) Univ. going forward can make universal vigilance on sexual attacks “its business”


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