Defamation, which is also referred to as slander (spoken form of defamation), calumny, and libel (written or broadcasted forms of defamation) is the direct communication of a statement, which delivers a claim that is expressly stated or implied to be factual and gives an individual, a business entity, a group, government body or product a negative image.
Defamation is an illegal act in all fifty states and although the action does not pose physical threats or damage, the end result of defamation will result in a damaged reputation.
In most instances, a claim of defamation typically needs a requirement that the claim made against the entity was malicious and delivered to disrupt the victimized party’s reputation or ability to carry out its intended role.
In common law jurisdictions in the United States, slander, which is a classification of defamation, is defined as a malicious, false, and defamatory statement or report. In contrast, libel refers to any other form of communication that is regarded as demeaning or egregious. Typically, libel comes in the form of written communication or images.
The majority of jurisdictions in the United States allows for legal actions, civil and/or criminal sanctions, are affirmed to deter such attempts of defamation. As a result of the consequences of the action, the majority of civil law jurisdictions label the activity as a criminal action rather than as a tort.