A Citizen’s Duty: Expose Rogue Online Publications

….of the enemy and foreign media invaders writing under the Liberal agenda for this November 2008 presidential election is not only morally wrong but it is also a dangerous editorial policy that borders on treason, and a terrible practice of yellow journalism! In cyberspace jurisprudence, the victim/s of defamation may seek a legal remedy in any court of local and foreign jurisdictions. edwin a. sumcad [NWS Feb 22/08].

The American public should know – especially writers with a name to protect … a sterling reputation they have built for themselves as journalists year after year till the rest of their lives which they must defend to their grave — that it is not only despotic governments that suppress free speech but also, ironically, the Media.

In a researched-based editorial I published – “How-Why Vicious Media Gag Authors” which may be viewed or read

at https://nationalwriterssyndicate.com/content/view/234/2/ – I stated the following: “…we normally view violations of the 1st and 4th Amendments with the government and public officials as the culprits. Hardly do we realize that privately owned online publications under which we publish our creative works would violate our freedom of expression and privacy rights. [Borella, Michael S., Computer Privacy vs. First and Fourth Amendment Rights].”

Today countless readers see my name and the articles I wrote for American Chronicle in many different websites. The general public likes and benefits from them tremendously as it does also from the works of others, but Liberal extremists and radicals from the extreme left understandably don’t like them … they can only crucify but can’t write a coherent critique that does not swear or tear. Cursing with insuperable hatred, their expertise cannot rise beyond name-calling.

If Internet readers go to either Yahoo or Google and click on what I have written and published in the American Chronicle, it will open to the American Chronicle website. Only blank spaces are there where the articles were removed from or the readers are just brought to the online publication’s current home address. American Chronicle still uses my name to attract Internet viewers to its website.

But I am glad that the public – especially legions of inquiring fans – are now aware that I am not with this publication anymore, which I am sure many other reputable veteran journalists don’t want to be associated with, unless and until what we believed the current editorial management is changed and the publication is de-politicized from the orbit of the extreme left and stabilized back to normal.

A little historical reference may be in order here: The editorial staff was once led by a very experienced and capable editor-in-chief. What seemed to be the problem was, he was not a politicized editor and as the 2008 presidential election approaches, his subsequent removal from that commanding position by the politicking corporate management, was obvious. What happened after his removal soiled the image of the publication.

Many “writers” – those who can write as well as those who can’t — are still writing for American Chronicle. I hope those who are not just pseudo-journalists would continue to do so as a matter of voluntary public service feature, a privilege that is expressly granted.

However, the publication has been invaded not only by local radical extremists whose angry writings are meant to harm others but also by questionable foreign contributors that could not only write straight English but also could not suppress their crushing hatred of America as well as uncontrollable abhorrence of Americans and anything American.

And worse than this damaging import, those invaders meddle in domestic politics [see this acid at this Url http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/47795 http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/44195] and this consuming bitterness against Americans bared to the bone at , and turn the U.S. government into a punching bag. Perhaps they couldn’t mount those scurrilous attacks in their respective homelands like China or England because they are probably under strict security surveillance. The United States is the freest country in the world and the enemy of freedom swims here like fish in the water.

Even captured terrorists in whose hands, arms and body the blood of slaughtered Americans is tattooed in the name of Islamic jihad, expect the next President of the United States to give them equal freedom that American citizens they murdered enjoy, like the right to habeas corpus, so that they are free to roam the street to kill again and detonate their bombs once more and reduce buildings to rubbles. At least that is what Liberal presidential candidate Barack Obama pledged to the American public once he is elected president.

If America makes one of history’s deadly mistakes in November this year, Obama, an eloquent talker as agent of change to nowhere, will among others, close Guantanamo where murderous terrorists are confined in a prison camp, bring them to the United States as free men via habeas corpus and for those deadly creatures that swooped down on us from the bowels of the earth, happy days are here again!

Liberal publications typical of AC, publish anything that attacks the Establishment the Conservatives are connected to or identified with, to carry out a political agenda as if this November 2008 presidential election is a do or die struggle, that attacks of Al Qaeda and foreigners in the media that hate America are sought, encouraged, and published. This is not only morally wrong but it is also a dangerous editorial policy that borders on treason, and a terrible practice of yellow journalism!

But make no mistake about it – in the legitimate practice of journalism, it is not the invasion of foreign anti-American writers that is extremely worrisome. Atrocious grammar and incoherent articles of invading writers have become the current embarrassments of this once popular online publication which award-winning journalists no longer want to be associated with.

As evidence of the progressive downhill slide of this online network, it is sad to note that the editorial staff itself presents its own proof of poor competence in grammar if not plain laziness in editing articles with atrocious grammar and syntax before these are approved for publication. The editorial responsibility of correcting or editing submitted materials that were poorly written, or otherwise shouldn’t have been published because these are inimical to public interest if not a threat to national security, is thrown back to the reading public. If a reader sees some published errors, the reader should edit them … if trashy or libelous, should call the attention of the editors. The editorial staff does not do their editorial job for reasons that you and I could only imagine while our jaws drop in total disbelief.

Notice carefully that these editorial flaws and shortcomings are not – repeat not – typographical errors or omissions that even veteran journalists commit when trying to beat the deadline or when even seasoned reporters under tremendous time pressure are rushing the submission of their by-lined scopes. These poor writings are simply what they are – submissions that are badly written and unpublishable by any ordinary standard of writings a reputable publication may deem fit to print.

It becomes a noticeable insult when a publication thinks that the level of intelligence of the reading public deserves this kind of trash.

To believe with your own eyes, read this example carefully at http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/34114 , or pick up at random any poorly written article like it that appears in this online publication, and perhaps like me your eyeballs will pop out in a state of shock.

Click on this blight to see what kind of writings is published, at http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/47577 and on this next embarrassment read sorely with tea and sympathy at http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/51169 and see for yourself what kind of writings is now being published by this online outlet that had deteriorated badly. I have nothing personal against those who wrote them. I am merely pointing out the responsibility of editors in running a publication [I have been in that position for years]. But just read them without any bias aforethought and be your own judge. More of these “blights” as the publication downgraded itself, can be read if one is interested in examining further, articles of that kind in AC.

With regards to “squalid, obscene and defamatory” articles, can online publications be held liable due to editorial incompetence? This is the question I am often asked by writers in the Internet.

Online publications can be sued for defamation just like any other abusive and errant publications. However, if the function of the online publication takes the nature of ISP, the California Supreme Court ruled in the celebrated case of Barrett v. Rosenthal, S122953 that rogue publications are immune.

However, based on this ruling, “a newspaper couldn't be sued for carrying a libelous quote in its online edition, but could be sued if the libelous statement was made by one of its reporters.”

As I mentioned earlier in my other NWS article “AmChron Truncates Personal Attack To Elude Libel Suit”, when AC editors published a defamatory ad as an act of retribution against this author, or against any writer or anyone for that matter, the online publication is liable.

The decision of the appeals court that was overturned in the Barrett case was more in accord with the standard set by the UK court and other courts. Liability for defamation injury is similar to liability that covers newspapers and book publishers. The appellate court declared in its 2003 ruling that:

“Newspapers and publishers can be sued for publishing an author's libelous statement, although the victim generally must prove at least that the publisher knew or should have known that the statement was false and defamatory. Applying the same standard online would encourage Internet providers to monitor their message forums, as Congress intended in a 1996 law …”

In Godfrey v Demon Internet Ltd, Dr. Laurence Godfrey had been injured in the Internet by defamatory publications in one of those message forums. He sought a remedy in court in at least 10 Internet libel lawsuits. In 1998 he won an out-of-court settlement against British ISP Demon Internet.

The injured physician also prevailed in Godfrey v. Cornell University/Dolenga. His legal victories created precedents that swept across England. Some wayward and misbehaving websites were closed to avoid liability.

"NetBenefit PLC felt compelled to close the site of 'Outcast' after solicitors who represent the Pink Paper wrote warning that NetBenefit would be jointly liable for anything defamatory that Outcast put on their site.”

Imagine “Outcast” where AC is now situated – its victims of defamation were damaged and entitled to seek a legal remedy.

Although in the United States we have an immunity ruling in Barrett, in a similar suit filed against the San Francisco message board Craigs list, a federal judge in Chicago ruled that “the immunity was not absolute…”

What I am laying down before you is cyberspace jurisprudence. Because it is an Internet liability, it has no jurisdictional boundary. The legal dictum established by the courts in UK on similar defamatory violations in the Internet can be invoked as a precedent in the United States or elsewhere.

The Mexican Por Esto defamation case is another example. In this same report, "… Banamex … sued Por Esto's editor, Mario Menendez, as well as a Latin American Web newsletter and its editor, Al Giordano — in New York State court”, not necessarily in Mexico as the venue of action.

Take note of the fact that the editors of American Chronicle “truncated” or deleted the libelous statements which on July 19, 2007 I have requested them to remove, or face the consequence. AC capitulated. It was a smart move for Ac to heed this warning.

Nonetheless, the deletion was made not because it violated AC’s editorial policy. The new set of left-leaning editors do not just allow but also encourage the publication of smear materials so long as these are written by radical writers that kowtow to its November 2008 political agenda. It was removed to escape a libel suit and possible action of proper authorities.

Writing this expose’ is a journalist’s public duty. The importance of sharing this case of first impression with the innocent American public is, to say the least, monumental. #

© Copyright Edwin A. Sumcad. Access NWS February 22, 2008.

Click on NWS columnist button to know more about the author or you may e-mail your comment at ed.superx722@yahoo.com.sg.

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