Neiman Marcus v. Lait sheds light

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Neiman Marcus v. Lait sheds light

Oct 19, 2017

Conner Kashyap, Pepperdine student

This scenario [described below the line] would be almost a complete reflection of the Neiman Marcus v. Lait case in the sense that within both cases, some slander was written about both Neiman Marcus employees as well as the employees of PEP. Within the Neiman Marcus v Lait case, the Plaintiffs (employees) acted out by suing in three groups; each offended and defamed by the words written about them in the U.S.A. confidential. They did this because it is a lot easier to prove that they were damaged because insulting the small class as a whole, in turn, insults everyone who is a part of the specific class.

In order for me to sue PEP, we would need to determine which class/section of PEP they offended, if not multiple sections. Then we would, just like Neiman Marcus, divide and or stay in the sectioned groups that were offended and each group would try for a case. However, the larger groups, if any, will most likely not be able to sue because there are too many people who might never be affected by this slander since it is not directed toward an individual or small individual group within their specific section of work. The smaller group's cases, if any, do have merit because then their entire group is easily affected by what was written in the tweet by PEP especially since other companies such as PeR and LMYou have already taken notice of the slander. Another stem of proof presented is that others have responded to the racist, sexual, and scandalous tweet. As [the prompt] states, individuals have already started referring to PEP members as racist, sexist bigots on a social media platform so as long as physical proof can be displayed at trial in regards to individuals displaying knowledge of the horrid words written, they will have a legitimate case on their hands. The greatest possibility of a threat, as found in the Neiman Marcus v Lait case, is if the "small" group is still too large, making it difficult to for the tweet to target the individual group/groups.

Conner Kashyap, a student in Jon Pfeiffer's Fall 2017 Media Law class at Pepperdine University, wrote the above essay in response to the prompt:

You are an active member of a student organization called PEP and are currently the top candidate to land a position at PeR, a cutting-edge PR firm in Santa Monica, after graduation. Your friend who runs the PEP twitter account hits Margarita Monday too hard and tweets some very racist and sexual things about the restaurant staff. Very scandalous. In the morning, the tweets are picked up by Dine., a magazine that caters to all things food and drink in LA. The story goes viral and people start referring to PEP and its members as racist, sexist bigots. All of a sudden, PeR gives you the cold shoulder. Not only PeR, but also your fall back job, LMYou, shut you down.

Should you sue? Who? Would your case have merit?

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