New Washington Post Article Shows Need for Federal Anti-SLAPP Legislation

Dec 05, 12

The Washington Post recently ran a story about a woman in Virgina who is being sued over her Yelp review.  A contractor filed a $750,000 defamation lawsuit against the woman after she wrote a negative review about the work that he did on her home.  Virginia, like almost half of the states, does not have an anti-SLAPP law that could potentially allow this woman to get this case dismissed quickly.

Interestingly enough, the District of Columbia, less than 18 miles away, enacted anti-SLAPP legislation last year.  So what’s the problem? Residents sued in Virgina do not have an anti-SLAPP law to protect them for exercising their First Amendment rights of free speech and petition activity, but residents in DC do.

The solution? Federal anti-SLAPP legislation.  If federal anti-SLAPP legislation were enacted, all Americans, regardless of what state they lived in, would be free to exercise their First Amendment rights without fear of retaliation for doing so.  This is why Luther Lowe, Director of Government Affairs at Yelp, called this article “a reminder of why we need a federal anti-SLAPP law.”

Read the full article from Justin Jouvenal at the Washington Post here.

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  1. Runs Two Stories on SLAPPs | Public Participation Project - [...] a lawsuit in Virginia over a Yelp review, recently ran two articles discussing SLAPPs and quoted [...]

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