Hulk Hogan, the larger-than-life wrestling personality we all remember, once made a sex tape with a friend’s wife – the sex tape is not part of the CLE, you’ll have to use your imagination. That sex tape eventually made it’s way onto the internet, where it was published by a news website called Gawker. Hogan sued Gawker, asserting claims including invasion of privacy, infringement of personality rights, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
In March 2016, a jury found Gawker liable to Hogan and awarded him $115 million in compensatory damages plus $25 million in punitive damages. During post-trial negotiations, the parties settled for $31 million.
This case has huge implications for how a first amendment analysis changes in today’s world, where everyone has access to mass media distribution through social media platforms. In a world where a mom on a cell phone can become an overnight celebrity, how does the NY Times v. Sullivan analysis change? How does the pervasiveness of social media affect the legal concepts of reasonable expectations of privacy and public versus private figures?
This CLE explores these topics and more, with Clay Travis as the presenter. As a previous editor for Gawker’s sports site, Clay is the perfect lawyer to explore and explain the many issues this case presents.
Ethics Credit: Alabama and North Carolina.
Missouri lawyers: Outkick CLE classes are considered “self study” and are subject to a 6 hour cap per year. Self study classes cannot be carried over to the next year and may not be used to satisfy the professionalism, ethics or malpractice prevention education requirements of Rule 15.
Ohio lawyers: This course is approved for 1 hour of professional conduct.