November 15, 2011

Laura Heymann on reputation

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Laura Heymann, Professor of Law at William & Mary Law School, discusses her recent article in the Boston College Law Review entitled, The Law of Reputation and the Interest of the Audience. Heymann proposes viewing the concept of reputation as something formed by a community rather than something owned by an individual. Reputation, according to Heymann, is valuable because of the way a community uses it. She then discusses how thinking of reputation differently leads to thinking about different remedies for reputation-based harms. Heymann thinks current remedies for damage to one’s reputation do not focus enough on the affect it has on the community and proposes remedies for emotional injuries be separate from remedies for damages to the reputation. She then discusses how the Internet affects reputation, including how it enlarges communities, and how it intersects with privacy.