fair comment
fair com·ment n: a common-law privilege to criticize and comment on matters of public interest without being liable for defamation provided that the comment is an honest expression of opinion and free of malice

Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of Law. . 1996.

fair comment
n.
A defense in libel cases, used especially by the news media, that the published statements in question were meant to state facts that the writer or speaker believed were true.

The Essential Law Dictionary. — Sphinx Publishing, An imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. . 2008.


fair comment

Collins dictionary of law. . 2001.


fair comment
A statement of opinion (no matter how ludicrous) based on facts which are correctly stated, and which does not allege dishonorable motives on the part of the target of the comment. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that to protect free speech, statements made about a public person (politician, officeholder, movie star, author, etc.), even though untrue and harmful, are fair comment unless the victim can prove the opinions were stated maliciously — with hate, dislike, intent, or desire to harm. Fair comment is a crucial defense used by members of the media against libel suits.
Category: Accidents & Injuries
Category: Small Claims Court & Lawsuits

Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary. . 2009.


fair comment
n. A defense to a charge of defamation, that the statements were based on sincere opinion about a matter of public interest.

Webster's New World Law Dictionary. . 2000.


fair comment
A form of qualified privilege applied to news media publications relating to discussion of matters that are of legitimate concern to the community as a whole because they materially affect the interests of all the community. A term used in the defense of libel actions (See libel and slander), applying to statements made by a writer (e.g., in the news media) in an honest belief in their truth, relating to official acts, even though the statements are not true in fact. Fair comment must be based on facts truly stated, must not contain imputations of corrupt or dishonorable motives except as warranted by the facts, and must be an honest expression of the writer's real opinion.

Dictionary from West's Encyclopedia of American Law. 2005.


fair comment
A form of qualified privilege applied to news media publications relating to discussion of matters that are of legitimate concern to the community as a whole because they materially affect the interests of all the community. A term used in the defense of libel actions, applying to statements made by a writer (e.g., in the news media) in an honest belief in their truth, relating to official acts, even though the statements are not true in fact. Fair comment must be based on facts truly stated, must not contain imputations of corrupt or dishonorable motives except as warranted by the facts, and must be an honest expression of the writer's real opinion.

Short Dictionary of (mostly American) Legal Terms and Abbreviations.

fair comment
n.
   a statement of opinion (no matter how ludicrous) based on facts which are correctly stated and which does not allege dishonorable motives on the part of the target of the comment. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that to protect free speech, statements made about a public person (politician, officeholder, movie star, author, etc.), even though untrue and harmful, are fair comment unless the victim can prove the opinions were stated maliciously-with hate, dislike, intent and/or desire to harm. Thus, a public figure may not sue for defamation based on published opinions or alleged information which would be the basis of a lawsuit if said or published about a private person not worthy of opinion or comment. This is a crucial defense against libel suits put up by members of the media.

Law dictionary. . 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Fair comment — is a legal term for a common law defense in defamation cases (libel or slander).United StatesIn the United States, the traditional privilege of fair comment is seen as a protection for robust, even outrageous published or spoken opinions about… …   Wikipedia

  • fair comment — noun or fair criticism : the legal privilege everyone has to criticize and comment on matters of public interest provided he states facts truly and without malice and expresses his opinion honestly and provided any criticism he makes imputes no… …   Useful english dictionary

  • fair comment — A form of qualified privilege applied to news media publications relating to discussion of matters which are of legitimate concern to the community as a whole because they materially affect the interests of all the community. Phoenix Newspapers,… …   Black's law dictionary

  • fair comment — A form of qualified privilege applied to news media publications relating to discussion of matters which are of legitimate concern to the community as a whole because they materially affect the interests of all the community. Phoenix Newspapers,… …   Black's law dictionary

  • fair comment — /fɛə ˈkɒmɛnt/ (say fair koment) noun a defence to an action for defamation; the defendant must show that the statement, if not published maliciously, was fair comment on a matter of public interest and was substantially true …   Australian English dictionary

  • fair comment — Comment on a matter of public interest which is confined to comment on things and the acts of persons and does not extend to attacks upon personal character or to imputing immoral or corrupt motives. 33 Am J1st L & S § 162. Any criticism of a… …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • fair comment — spoken used for saying that you accept a statement or criticism …   English dictionary

  • comment — {{Roman}}I.{{/Roman}} noun ADJECTIVE ▪ brief ▪ fair ▪ What she said was fair comment. (BrE) ▪ What she said was a fair comment. (BrE, AmE) ▪ …   Collocations dictionary

  • fair — fair1 W2S1 [feə US fer] adj ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ 1¦(reasonable and acceptable)¦ 2¦(treating everyone equally)¦ 3¦(quite large)¦ 4¦(hair/skin)¦ 5¦(according to the rules)¦ 6¦(level of ability)¦ 7¦(weather)¦ 8 have had more than your fair share of something 9… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • fair — 1 adjective 1 REASONABLE AND ACCEPTABLE a situation, system, or way of treating people that is fair seems reasonable and acceptable: a fair wage for the job | Who said life was fair? | Everyone should have the right to a fair trial. | it is fair… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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