“Lies have consequences”: Dominion announces settlement with Fox
A bombastic $787.5 million settlement was reached in Tuesday’s defamation trial between Dominion Voting Systems and Fox News, avoiding a painful trial for the right-wing network, owner Rupert Murdoch and some of its top presenters.
Dominion attorney Justin Nelson announced the out-of-court settlement, saying, “Truth counts, lies have consequences.”
Although Fox News acknowledged that the Delaware court found some of its election reporting incorrect, Fox News shortly before that apologized.
Parent company Fox Corporation first confirmed the $787.5 million settlement in an SEC filing on Wednesday.
The trial was supposed to start on Monday, but the start was delayed by more than a day due to last-minute negotiations between lawyers for both parties.
Mediator Jerry Roscoe told CNN he helped negotiate the deal after receiving an urgent phone call while on vacation in Europe on Sunday.
Lead lawyers were “really far apart” on a settlement number before the deal was negotiated over Zoom and phone calls, he said.
The settlement allowed the network’s moderators, including Sean Hannity, to avoid having to testify in the decade’s most high-profile media trial.
Holiday mediator ousted in ‘looming’ court hearing at last minute – report
By 9 a.m. Tuesday, the prospect of a trial between Fox News and Dominion appeared imminent after both parties failed to reach an agreement over the weekend.
An email was sent to longtime broker Jerry Roscoe, who was vacationing in Europe and ended up reading thousands of pages of documents in preparation for talks with attorneys for both sides, the Washington Post reported.
“The parties were not too optimistic that a solution would be reached,” he said.
Mr. Roscoe held about 50 meetings with both sides and recognized that Dominion’s monetary claim wasn’t the only issue standing in the way of arbitration – there were also disagreements over the language Fox would publish in the statement.
“Both sides had good lawyers and wanted to see if they could solve the case,” he said. “But I wasn’t sure if we would solve it until it was actually solved.”
After the settlement was announced on Tuesday, Mr Roscoe said. “It was just a sense of relief and fulfillment.”
Although Fox News’ final statement offered no apology, Dominion said the sheer size of the settlement was enough and it meant Dominion would hold Fox accountable.
Schweta SharmaApril 20, 2023 5:30 am
Stephen Colbert shares his frustration at the Fox/Dominion settlement: “Damn! I want my trial!’
Stephen Colbert couldn’t help but laugh as he discussed the news that Fox News settled a $787.5 million defamation lawsuit with Dominion.
“Damn! I want my exam! I want it!” he cried. “I wanted to see Rupert Murdoch put his hand on the Bible and burst into flames.
“I think it’s satisfying for Dominion that Rup-y had to give up a lot of money, but that doesn’t do our democracy any harm.”
Isobel Lewis has the whole story.
Bevan HurleyApril 20, 2023 05:00
Trump’s election lies cost Fox $787 million – will they also cost him the White House in 2024?
that of the independent Andrew Feinberg writes:
For a good chunk of the quarter-century that the network has been on the air, Fox News went by the mantra of “we report, you decide.”
But after the network wholeheartedly embraced Donald Trump in 2016, the coverage became optional as their viewers had already made up their minds.
They chose to believe everything Trump told them. And when they heard something to contradict that, they looked elsewhere for more comforting lies.
Two years on, Fox Trump’s audience has remained loyal, but the twice-impeached ex-president’s lies are still taking their toll.
Some of these costs may have yet to be extracted from Fox’s bottom line.
Another voting machine maker, Smartmatic, still has a multibillion-dollar lawsuit pending against Fox over many of the same lies that were pushed Rupert Murdoch and his organization to offer more than three quarters of a billion dollars to get Dominion to drop their case.
But it could be Mr Trump who ultimately pays the ultimate price.
Bevan HurleyApril 20, 2023 04:00
Fox News is finally covering the Dominion trial but doesn’t mention how much they’re paying to make it go away
Fox News has had very little to say about Dominion Voting Systems’ $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit for most of its existence, but finally deemed the story worth reporting when it announced Tuesday that the parties had agreed.
In the Fox News story — which is 256 words, about 70 of which are block quotes from a Fox announcer — we learn nothing Why The company was sued, only it was widely sued for defamation. We also don’t learn how much it cost the network to kill the process.
(It was $787.5 million in case you missed it.)
Graig Graziosi has the story.
Bevan HurleyApr 20, 2023 3:00 am
Murdoch’s Mega Fox payout shows there’s one thing not to mess with…
that of the independent Sean O’Grady writes:
“The truth counts. Lies have consequences.” Dominion Voting Systems’ attorney put it better than any of Rupert Murdoch’s mercenary army of journalists ever would; or ever allowed to try (the sensational story doesn’t feature much on its channels or in its titles). And it’s about time someone, somewhere, decided, “That’s enough with the fake news.”
Without wishing to come across as hypocritical—we journalists are all flawed—the humiliation of Fox News by Dominion, a hitherto obscure voting machine company, is a victory for truth.
It’s not that simple – because no libel case of this magnitude can be – but the world is a little better off now, a little safer, a little better protected from the abuses of media power than it was before Rupert Murdoch’s Fox News decided to cave in to Dominion.
Bevan HurleyApril 20, 2023 02:00
Trump is silent on Fox’s Dominion lawsuit settlement
Former President Donald Trump’s social media output in the hours since Fox News reached a $787 million settlement with Dominion Voting Systems has included numerous posts promoting a range of digital trading cards he sells , attacks on Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, and bizarre complaints about Elon Musk and alleged censorship on Twitter (where Mr. Trump’s account has remained unused since it was restored earlier this year).
But Mr Trump did not weigh Fox’s decision to offer Dominion more than three-quarters of a billion dollars instead of letting a Delaware jury determine how much the right-wing network should pay for spreading repeated lies about the company’s products Reporting the truth because it upset their audience.
Andrew Feinberg reports.
Bevan HurleyApril 20, 2023 1:30 am
The veteran mediator who brokered the settlement between Fox and Dominion
CNN has a new, behind-the-scenes look at how the historic $787.5 million settlement between Fox News and Dominion Voting Systems came about.
Trial attorney Jerry Roscoe told the network he took an urgent call during a European river cruise celebrating his 70th birthday on Sunday and asked if he would broker a deal between the two parties.
The lead counsel are “really far apart” on a comparative number, Mr. Roscoe said.
But after an intense 24-hour “shuttle diplomacy” involving phone calls and Zoom meetings, Mr Roscoe had negotiated the largest known libel payment against a media organization in US history.
According to a company profile, Mr. Roscoe has over 30 years of experience resolving complex commercial, health, labor and environmental disputes.
Bevan HurleyApril 20, 2023 01:00
Anyone sued by Dominion for election lies
While the case grabbed most of the headlines for Fox News, Dominion filed a series of defamation lawsuits against right-wing networks, lawyers and media figures in the months following the 2020 election.
Here are everyone that Dominion is suing.
Bevan HurleyApr 20, 2023 12:30 am
How Dominion’s near-trial against Fox exploded in a follow-up finale
Mounds of boxes of evidence were wheeled into a seventh-floor courtroom on Tuesday morning, just before lawyers for Dominion Voting Systems planned to eviscerate Fox News and Fox Corporation leadership over the spate of false claims about the company following the 2020 election.
Later that morning the jury was sworn in. They ordered lunch. Hours later it was over. And Fox News admitted that statements about Dominion were false and agreed to pay the voting machine company more than $787 million in a settlement that averted one of the largest defamation lawsuits in American history.
Alex Woodwart about the made-for-television courtroom drama that would never be televised.
Bevan HurleyApril 20, 2023 12:00 am
Don’t be disappointed with the Fox News vs. Dominion result – this is just the beginning
Noah Berlatsky writes for The Independent:
I, along with many others, had hoped for a full trial. We wanted Fox hosts like Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity to testify under oath in court that they lied to their viewers about the election and insisted the vote against Donald Trump was rigged when they knew it wasn’t was.
Fox was keen to avoid that, and with a $787.5 million settlement — the largest libel payout in American history — they did.
A long trial that underscores the perfidy and ruthlessness of right-wing media would have been a healthy outcome for democracy and might even have undermined Fox’s reputation with some of its fan base.
But it’s important to recognize that the lawsuit provides some accountability and, just as important, makes future coup attempts or attacks on democracy more difficult. We know from discoveries that Fox carefully weighed incentives and financial consequences before spreading election lies. This payout changes those incentives going forward. That’s good.
Bevan HurleyApril 19, 2023 11:30 p.m