Accessibility/Mobile Features
Skip Navigation
Skip to Content
Editorial News
Entertainment
Classified Sites

The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Jury rejects defamation case against Courtney Love over a 2010 tweet about her ex-lawyer

FILE - In this Oct. 15, 2013 file photo, Courtney Love arrives at the Elton John AIDS Foundation's 12th Annual

Enlarge Image

FILE - In this Oct. 15, 2013 file photo, Courtney Love arrives at the Elton John AIDS Foundation's 12th Annual "An Enduring Vision" benefit gala at Cipriani Wall Street, in New York. A jury determined Friday, Jan. 24, 2014, that Love did not defame a San Diego attorney when she sent a 2010 tweet stating that the lawyer had been “bought off.” Attorneys for Rhonda Holmes had been seeking $8 million in damages but the jury rejected her case. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Invision/AP, file)

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - A jury on Friday rejected a defamation case against Courtney Love over a Twitter post that suggested one of her attorneys had been "bought off" for not pursuing a lawsuit over her late husband's estate.

The verdict came after roughly three hours of deliberation in a case that spanned eight days and focused on the Hole frontwoman's postings on the social networking site. The case centred on one 2010 post that suggested that San Diego attorney Rhonda Holmes had been "bought off" and that was why she wasn't representing the singer anymore.

Love had hired Holmes to file a fraud case against the estate of her late husband, Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. The lawyer contended during the trial that she was fired by Love and that the tweet and other statements the singer made against her have caused her substantial damage.

Love's tweet stated, "I was (expletive) devastated when Rhonda J Holmes Esq of san diego was bought off" in response to a question from user of the popular social media site.

The message was never meant to be public, Love told jurors. She said she meant for it to be sent as a direct message, which only the recipient would see, but it instead went public and was quickly deleted.

The swift verdict wasn't witnessed by Love, who had left court after closing arguments ended Friday morning. She arrived just as the courthouse was closing down and met her attorneys, John Lawrence and Matthew Bures, in the hallway where she hugged them both.

Love praised her attorneys and the jury after the verdict. Asked about her social media presence, Love said she refrained from posting on Twitter during the trial. "I didn't tweet out of respect for the case," she said.

While the case was billed as the first "Twibel" trial in which Twitter and libel law intersected, Lawrence said it was tried by the same rules as traditional defamation cases.

Jurors determined that Love's tweet included false information, but the musician didn't know it wasn't true.

Holmes attorney Mitchell Langberg said the jury's verdict meant the panel determined Love's statement was defamatory, but the singer couldn't be held liable for it. Holmes' side asked the panel to award $8 million in damages and send a message that false statements online had consequences.

Langberg said that while his client was disappointed with the verdict, her reputation was upheld and the world now knows that Love's statements were false.

"At the end of the day, her biggest asset in life is her reputation," Langberg said. "That she got back today."

Love's social media postings have gotten her into trouble several times.

In 2011, she agreed to pay $430,000 to fashion designer Dawn Simorangkir over statements she posted on Twitter and Myspace. Simorangkir sued Love again last year, alleging the musician libeled her when Love accused Simorangkir of theft on the Howard Stern's radio show and taunted her on the social media site Pinterest. The case is pending, but Love said she's trying to be more careful about her online musings than she was when she tweeted about Holmes.

"I don't tweet like I did back then," Love said Friday.

___

Anthony McCartney can be reached at http://twitter.com/mccartneyAP .

  • Rate this Rate This Star Icon
  • This article has not yet been rated.
  • We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high. If you thought it was well written, do the same. If it doesn’t meet your standards, mark it accordingly.

    You can also register and/or login to the site and join the conversation by leaving a comment.

    Rate it yourself by rolling over the stars and clicking when you reach your desired rating. We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high.

Sort by: Newest to Oldest | Oldest to Newest | Most Popular 0 Commentscomment icon

You can comment on most stories on brandonsun.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is register and/or login and you can join the conversation and give your feedback.

There are no comments at the moment. Be the first to post a comment below.

Post Your Commentcomment icon

Comment
  • You have characters left

The Brandon Sun does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. Comments are moderated before publication. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

Brandon Sun Business Directory
Submit a Random Act of Kindness
Why Not Minot?
Welcome to Winnipeg

Social Media