Defamation Proceedings : Twitter

Published on 26 November 2010 by admin in blog


The High court has held in defamation proceedings that a claim could proceed to trial despite few people following the Tweet. The former New Zealand cricketer Chris Cairns proceeded with  a claim alleging that 100 people had read the tweet which alleged that the former New Zealand cricketer  had accused him of match fixing and was libellous. Modi claimed that only 35 people had read the tweet.

Modis’ team followed the case of Yousef  Jameel and Dow Jones in 2005 which found in that case the libel was so small as to be an abuse of process and  not worth fighting over.

The High Court ruled in this case that the case could proceed to trial.

The High Court judge ruled that the number of people who saw the statement was only one factor. The abuse of process in Jameel did not depend on just numbers. Cairns had resided in the UK and anticipated he would in the future, this was a factor. The tweet could well be repeated and then distributed. Damages were to be assessed on more than the number of people who had read the tweet.

The fact that your tweets have only been read by a small number of people is not the only factor. Your statements may then be followed and distributed and that could lead to a claim.

If you require advice on Defamation Matters call Armstrongs or fill out one of our contact forms on line.

To make an online enquiry please fill in the quick form below.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)


Nature of Enquiry

Your Message

Leave a Reply