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12-Apr-2017 12:07

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But “Drew,” the alleged victim’s date, and someone who allegedly lured her to the place where she was raped, isn’t identified by name — the story labels him as someone “whom we’ll call Drew.” He is identified as a junior, a Phi Kappa Psi member and a swimming pool lifeguard who worked with Jackie, the alleged victim. [Today, a charge of homosexuality may not be seen as defamatory, the way it was when the Restatement (Second) was published, but that’s a separate issue. 1988) (yes, that’s the Swaggart you’re thinking of). if, although not for profit, it depends upon financial support from the public, and the matter tends to interfere with its activities by prejudicing it in public estimation.But that seems inadequate to point to anyone in particular, especially if it is true that — as the fraternity asserts — no Phi Kappa Psi member actually worked as a lifeguard. A magazine publishes the statement that most of the sales staff of a department store are homosexuals. -EV] I don’t know how large Phi Kappa Psi is, but as I understand it there are 16,000 undergrads at UVA, of whom about 30 percent are in fraternities or sororities, and there are about 30 fraternities. As the Restatement (Second) of Torts § 561(b) puts it, One who publishes defamatory matter concerning a corporation is subject to liability to it . The allegations of such group misconduct at the fraternity house certainly do harm the fraternity as an organization “in public estimation.” Therefore, if the chapter has independent legal existence, whether as a corporation or as an unincorporated association, and if it can show loss of income from potential members or from donors — or other loss stemming from, for instance, punishment by the university — then it could potentially prevail on this.I The public corporation we refer to as the "University" is denominated by state law as "the Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia," Va. § 23-69 (1993), and it is responsible for governing the school, §§ 23-69 to 23-80. The SAF is based on the University's "recogni[tion] that the availability of a wide range of opportunities" for its students "tends to enhance the University environment." App. The Guidelines require that it be administered "in a manner consistent with the educational purpose of the University, as well as with state and federal law." App. The Guidelines recognize 11 categories of student groups that may seek payment to third-party contractors because they "are related to the educational purpose of the University of Virginia." at 61a.Founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819, and ranked by him, together with the authorship of the Declaration of Independence and of the Virginia Act for Religious Freedom, Va. § 57-1, as one of his proudest achievements, the University is among the Nation's oldest and most respected seats of higher learning. CIOs enjoy access to University facilities, including meeting rooms and computer terminals. A standard agreement signed between each CIO and the University provides that the benefits and opportunities afforded to CIOs should not be misinterpreted as meaning that those organizations are part of or controlled by the University, that the University is responsible for the organizations' contracts or other acts or omissions, or that the University approves of the organizations' goals or activities. All CIOs may exist and operate at the University, but some are also entitled to apply for funds from the Student Activities Fund (SAF). The Guidelines also specify, however, that the costs of certain activities of CIOs that are otherwise eligible for funding will not be reimbursed by the SAF.

Syllabus Respondent University of Virginia, a state instrumentality, authorizes payments from its Student Activities Fund (SAF) to outside contractors for the printing costs of a variety of publications issued by student groups called "Contracted Independent Organizations" (CIOs). (c) Vital First Amendment speech principles are at stake here. The violation following from the University's denial of SAF support to petitioners is not excused by the necessity of complying with the Establishment Clause. Such neutrality is a significant factor in upholding programs in the face of Establishment Clause attack, and the guarantee of neutrality is not offended where, as here, the government follows neutral criteria and even-handed policies to extend benefits to recipients whose ideologies and viewpoints, including religious ones, are broad and diverse, 512 U. The SAF's purpose is to open a forum for speech and to support various student enterprises, including the publication of newspapers, in recognition of the diversity and creativity of student life. Were the contrary view to become law, the University could only avoid a constitutional violation by scrutinizing the content of student speech, lest it contain too great a religious message. KENNEDY, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which REHNQUIST, C. O'CONNOR, J., and THOMAS, J., filed concurring opinions.It has more than 11,000 undergraduate students, and 6,000 graduate and professional students. A CIO must file its constitution with the University; must pledge not to discriminate in its membership; and must include in dealings with third parties and in all written materials a disclaimer, stating that the CIO is independent of the University and that the University is not responsible for the CIO. Established and governed by University Guidelines, the purpose of the SAF is to support a broad range of extracurricular student activities that "are related to the educational purpose of the University." App. The student activities which are excluded from SAF support are religious activities, philanthropic contributions and activities, political activities, activities that would jeopardize the University's tax exempt status, those which involve payment of honoraria or similar fees, or social entertainment or related expenses. The prohibition on "political activities" is defined so that it is limited to electioneering and lobbying. espouses particular positions or ideological viewpoints, including those that may be unpopular or are not generally accepted. The Guidelines prescribe these criteria for determining the amounts of third-party disbursements that will be allowed on behalf of each eligible student organization: the size of the group, its financial self-sufficiency, and the University-wide benefit of its activities.An understanding of the case requires a somewhat detailed description of the program the University created to support extracurricular student activities on its campus. The Guidelines provide that [t]hese restrictions on funding political activities are not intended to preclude funding of any otherwise eligible student organization which . If an organization seeks SAF support, it must submit its bills to the Student Council, which pays the organization's creditors upon determining that the expenses are appropriate. During the 1990-1991 academic year, 343 student groups qualified as CIOs.Identifying an alleged criminal by his nickname can be libel, so long as some people would recognize the person by that nickname. A newspaper publishes a statement that the officers of a corporation have embezzled its funds. The damage to them probably would thus be considerably less than to the Phi Kappa Psi members. The fraternity as an organization: Corporations and unincorporated associations that have recognized legal identities (such as unions, partnerships and the like) can also sue for defamation that causes injury to their organizational reputation, independently of whether any member was defamed. (In many states, even nondefamatory falsehoods about a person can be actionable under the “false light” tort if they would be highly offensive to a reasonable person; but the false light tort isn’t recognized in Virginia.) E. What more do the plaintiffs need to show to prevail? The fraternity members are almost certainly “private figures,” and I suspect that the local chapter and even the national fraternity likely would be, too. The difference between private and public figures here is just that private figures can recover actual damages based on just a showing of negligence. Butts (1967).) Moreover, while different people might dispute whether the accusations here were indeed “highly improbable,” a plaintiff could subpoena the editors and ask whether they themselves consciously entertained doubts about the story. Lando (1979) confirms that such discovery is potentially available.



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