Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Invasion of Privacy: False Light

False Light is another legal term that ordinary people don't have much knowledge of it.

"False light invasion of privacy occurs when information is published about a person that is false or places the person in a false light, is highly offensive to a reasonable person, and is published with knowledge or in reckless disregard of whether the information was false or would place the person in a false light."

False light is similar to defamation, but it is not the same. However, false light also contains the following elements: 1. The false information is published either in verbal or written form; 2. The false information is made with actual malice; 3. It would put a person under false light; and 4. It is highly offensive (to reasonable persons).

There are many cases involving the communication of information which, although perhaps not "technically" false, is still misleading. The effect of publishing such misleading information about a person to the "public eye" is nonetheless embarrassing and potentially injurious to that person. The key word here is "false" - means to publish misinformation or malicious distortion when it is known to be false.

Both False Light and Slander, defamation of character have destructive impact to a person's reputation, professional career and life. I am a victim of both, the tort of defamation of character, and tort of invasion of privacy false light. In this new country where I landed three years ago, I experienced institutional oppression and persecution because of these two torts.

When a person is put under false light, the public has the tendency to judge this person negatively. I myself have too much painful experience in the past three years. Whatever I said, or I did was always taken in a bad way even when I tried to help others.

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