By signing on to the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the Liberal government agreed to significantly alter the existing common law of defamation, Toronto lawyer and mediator Howard Winkler writes in Law Times.
The winners are companies like Google and Facebook, which facilitate online communication, says Winkler, principal and founder of Winkler Dispute Resolution.
“The loser is the common law protection of reputation and victims of anonymous false and defamatory online statements, such as untraceable comments on rate-my-professional types of sites or Google business reviews,” he writes. “This should be of particular concern to all Ontario lawyers whose reputations are so important and so easily destroyed, as well as to their clients, whose livelihood often depends on their online presence.”
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