Electronic mail ("e-mail") has taken its place as an integral part of communication in modern society. Unlike other forms of communication, e-mail can cheaply and efficiently be placed in a public domain for literally the world to see. These public areas, otherwise known as bulletin boards, have expanded society's ability to communicate over vast distances. Individuals or groups can also engage in mass communication, which involves a myriad of topics and concerns. Nevertheless, such electronic communications, as almost any other form of communication, can become volatile and create animosity among users. Hence, many of the remarks made in such exchanges can become defamatory in nature. When such banter becomes litigious, e-mail and Internet service providers ("ISPs") are brought into the fray.
Michael H. Spencer,
Defamatory E-mail and Employer Liability: Why Razing Zeran v. America Online Is a Good Thing,
Rich. J.L. & Tech
Available at: http://scholarship.richmond.edu/jolt/vol6/iss5/6