As a blogger attempting to expose the underlying motivations for the actions of public figures, I try to walk the line between exposing and mocking public figures for a moral cause and to defame for malicious reasons. My goal is not to defame anyone. Defamation serves no purpose.
I do use humor and the bar is set high to equate humor to defamation. If it wasn’t, Ajit Ninan and our dear RK Laxman would be in jail.
Just to let you all know, I follow the AP Style book and Libel Manual. You can read some excerpts here: Here is an outline.
Some of the links are broken. I’ll have the files up as soon as I find them. In the meantime, here is a definition of a public figure.
“A public figure who charges libel not only may need to prove the falseness of the charges but that they were made with “reckless disregard for the truth” or actual malice. Since this is a very high standard, we can conclude that careful publishing of information about public figures is well-protected.
However, there are many misconceptions about the definition of a public figure. The Manual notes: “public figure means people who seek the limelight, who inject themselves into public debate.” A public figure is not simply a person of interest to the public, but one who, in the words of the Supreme Court, has injected themselves into a public controversy” in order to influence resolution of the issues involved in it.”
Again, my intention is to highlight the effect idiotic laws have on our society. There is no civilized country which allows the jailing or harassment of a female blood relative of a man on the basis of an allegation. This is the ridiculous state of affairs that we find our country in. What a shame !