Anonymous Screech: Protecting anonymous expression and reputation in a digital age

Brian Carroll


he fantastic growth of the web and of digital discursive spaces, including those offered in and by social media, has exacerbated a problem long wrestled with by the courts even in the analog pre-web era "“ anonymous defamation1 U.S. courts are faced with the difficult,sometimes seemingly impossible task of balancing the right to a good name on the one hand against a speaker"™s First Amendment right to anonymous expression, even that which defames, on the other, in and with a medium that enables and encourages cheaply, even freely published, globally distributed, cached, and searchable expression.2

1For a discussion of the range of problems that the Internet has raised, see Anita B. Frohlich, Copyright Infringement in the Internet Age:Primetime for Harmonized Conflict of Law Rules? 24 BERKLEY TECH. L.J. 51 (2009); Ashley Packard, Wired But Mired: Legal System Inconsistencies Puzzle International Internet Publishers, 1 J. INT"™L MEDIA & ENT. LAW 57 (2007); and Peter P. Swire, Elephants and Mice Revisited: Law and Choice of Law on the Internet, 153 U. PA. L. REV. 1975 (2005).

2In this article, anonymous expression refers both to the truly anonymous-expressiom identified by no name or person, and as a subset of anonymity, pseudonymity, or expression identified by name, but not the legal name of the author.

Palabras clave

Anonymous expression, reputation, digital discursive spaces

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ISSN: 2007-2678

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