Rupert Murdoch is not an officer of Fox News, but a lawyer contends that it is a “non-defamatory” company
Fox News denied any wrong doing, maintained it was proud of its 2020 election coverage, and said that the lawsuit that it was facing represented a threat to the First Amendment. The network says that’s not true at all.
At a pre trial hearing in Delaware Tuesday, Judge Eric Davis said that he had a problem with it being represented to him that he is not an officer of Fox News. At another hearing the next day, he told Fox’s attorneys, “I need people to tell me the truth, and by the way, omission is a lie.”
The legal spat revolves around Murdoch’s roles at Fox News and its parent company, Fox Corporation. When he was asked directly by the judge, Fox lawyers said he didn’t have an official title at Fox News. But last week, Fox disclosed that he is also an executive officer at Fox News.
“Both parties have made these witnesses very relevant,” Davis said, regarding the Murdochs. Fox was trying to block Dominion from having the Murdochs on the witness stand.
Conservative TV darlings Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity and a slew of other Fox News stars and executives, including the network’s 92-year-old owner Rupert Murdoch, may soon have their days in court in what stands to be the biggest media trial since the 1980s.
In the weeks after the election both appeared on Fox programming and peddled baseless conspiratorial claims, including that the company was created to rig elections in favor of the late-Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez.
Regardless of whether the case goes to trial, the evidence that emerged from it hurts Fox News’ credibility and exposes it as a dishonest organization willing to push lies to its audience.
In 1964, the Supreme Court ruled thatDefamation cases are hard to win in the United States. Defamation has to meet high standards. It has to have been done with malice, and it must have known at the time it was lying that it was wrong. The court has already ruled on the first two, saying that Fox aired lies and knew they were lies, so instead of a question of truth, it’s about whether Fox did so maliciously.
The 1964 Supreme Court ruling made it difficult to prove defamation in the US legal system. The burden of proof is on the person who is in the picture. Attorneys for the corporation must prove that Fox leaders were aware that the statements made against them were false.
That high standard is called actual malice. It is intended to protect media from being reprimanded for reporting on powerful figures.
Dominion and Fox Corporation: Defamation of the Broadcast News Anchorship Correspondence in Delaware & Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric Davis
In a pre-trial ruling this month, Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric Davis asserted there is no question that the contested statements Fox aired about Dominion were false.
Thousands of text messages and email exchanges revealed in legal documents show that Fox personalities and executives knew the claims their hosts and guests blasted on air were false.
Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal lawyer, and Sidney Powell, a Trump ally, were two of the guests. There have been no rulings in either of the Dominion lawsuits against Giuliani and Powell.
“The whole thing seems insane to me, and Sidney Powell won’t release the evidence. “Which I dislike,” Carlson said a couple weeks after the election.
Asked by a Dominion attorney under oath whether or not he could have directed Scott to stop hosting Powell and Giuliani on Fox, Murdoch answered that he could have.
Gauging by what Fox has presented in court, the network’s attorneys maintain the election-technology company’s worth is nowhere near the $1.6 billion Dominion is asking for.
A trial in a defamation case is set to begin this week. It can have significant ramifications for the right-wing cable channel.
Jones was referring to Abby Grossberg, a former producer for the news outlet who claimed Fox lawyers bullied her into protecting the network and its on-air personalities in her deposition for the Dominion case. She has escalated her own lawsuit against the company, adding CEO Suzanne Scott as defendant and accusing the company’s lawyers of deleting messages from her phone.
That could be a big hit to Fox. According to its latest earnings statement, Fox Corporation has $4 billion in cash on hand. How much insurance the company has or what its insurance policy would cover are not known.
The Tucker Carlson Trial: Preparing for Election Denialism with the DAMA-Newton Observatories in Los Alamos
The damning behind-the-scenes communications were included in roughly 10,000 pages of court documents that have been made public as part of the lawsuit, many of which are likely to be shown in the trial.
For example, host Tucker Carlson said in one text message he “passionately” hates Trump. Tucker Carlson said in a November 2020 exchange that Trump’s behavior after winning the election was disgusting, and that he was trying to look away.
The trial will begin in Delaware on Monday, with opening statements scheduled for some point during the day. Jury selection is also expected to wrap up Monday morning, ending with a panel of 12 jurors and 12 alternates. It’s anticipated that opening statements will begin immediately after the jury is seated. The trial is expected to last five to six weeks.
The trial will continue until Tuesday, April 18, 2023 at 9:00 a.m. I will make that announcement tomorrow morning in Courtroom 7E.
According to a First Amendment expert and professor at the University of Utah, Dominion has seemed quite motivated to play it out on a public stage and correct the larger record on election denialism.
The case of Fox versus the D1 operator in a $Lambda X’$ epsilon network
The case has progressed through the court system and legal experts were surprised that Fox didn’t settle the case. A settlement would allow Fox to avoid an embarrassing and torturous couple of weeks.
Some of the executives and hosts of the network will testify in the trial about the election lies that they promoted after the 2020 election.