Amy R. Stein


This Note argues that Canada should recognize a privilege for media defendants similar to the United States actual malice standard in order to guarantee fully the freedom of the press set forth in the new Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Part I examines the recently adopted Charter, and the similarity between its free press provision and the first amendment of the United States Constitution. Part II demonstrates how current Canadian libel law curtails freedom of the press by burdening media defendants. Part III argues that the United States constitutional privilege better protects freedom of the press as guaranteed in the First Amendment than has the Charter in Canada. This Note concludes that in order for Canada to ensure media defendants the right of free speech as guaranteed in the Charter, the Canadian courts should adopt a more protective libel standard for media defendants, similar to the actual malice standard in the United States.