Australian court rules media liable for Facebook comments

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia’s highest court has made a landmark ruling that media outlets are “publishers” of allegedly defamatory comments posted by third parties on their official Facebook pages. The High Court on Wednesday dismissed an argument by some of Australia’s largest media organizations that for people to be a publishers, they must be aware of the defamatory content and intend to convey it. The court found that by facilitating and encouraging the comments, the companies had participated in their communication. The decision opens the media organizations to be sued for defamation by former juvenile detainee Dylan Voller. His defamation case launched in 2017 was put on hold while the separate question of liability was decided.