Card image cap

SLAPP Litigation: Free Speech in the Commercial and Political Context

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 88 minutes
Recorded Date: June 16, 2010
Click here to share this program
Download PDF


  • Introduction: Defining SLAPP Suits
  • Litigating SLAPPs: The Typical Case
  • SLAPP Case Law Update
  • Current Cases and How They Advance the SLAPP Discussion
  • Federal Legislation: The Citizen Participation Act of 2009 (HR 4364)
  • Closing Remarks

    This program was recorded in San Francisco, California on June 16, 2010.

  • Description

    Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation, or SLAPPS, are suits that are intended to censor, intimidate and silence critics by burdening them with the cost of a legal defense until they abandon their criticism or opposition to, for example, a real estate development or product. A SLAPP may also intimidate others from participating in the debate. Anti-SLAPP motions, then, are responses to such litigation that claims the plaintiffs are suing only to squelch legitimate public debate. The term SLAPP was coined in the 1980s. This body of law has found a unique home in California, which was one of the first states to enact a statute, Code of Civil Procedure section 425.16, in 1992, to frustrate SLAPPs by providing a quick and inexpensive defense. This program provides an introduction to the topic to new practitioners, as well as more in-depth updates on where the field is moving, both in California and on a national level.

    This program was moderated by Susan Kostal and recorded in San Francisco, California on June 16, 2010.

    Provided By

    Card image cap
    Card image cap


    Card image cap

    Mark Goldowitz

    California Anti-Slapp Project

    Mark Goldowitz is the founder and director of the California Anti-Slapp Project, based in Berkeley, CA, and the founder of the Public Participation Project, a project of CASP that is leading a campaign for federal anti-SLAPP legislation. He has specialized in First Amendment and anti-SLAPP issues since 1993, and has written and lectured widely on California¿s anti-SLAPP law. He has prevailed in many SLAPP suits, into six published opinions, and the first such opinion by the California Supreme Court.

    Card image cap

    Harmeet Dhillon

    Dhillon & Smith

    Harmeet Dhillon is a partner with Dhillon & Smith in San Francisco. She is an experienced business trial lawyer, trusted boardroom advisor, and advocate for individual, corporate and institutional clients. Her practice has focused on federal and state commercial litigation and arbitration, with a particular emphasis on unfair competition/trade secret misappropriation, intellectual property (including trademark litigation and internet torts), complex contractual disputes, and First Amendment litigation (including defamation, trade libel, right of publicity, and anti-SLAPP motions). Harmeet's broad experience also encompasses securities, entertainment, employment discrimination and civil rights matters. She was also a Republican candidate for the state assembly in 2008 and a former board member of the ACLU of Northern California. She currently represents the Republican Central Committee of Los Angeles County in SLAPP litigation.

    Card image cap

    John L. Cooper

    Farella Braun & Martel

    John L. Cooper is a partner with Farella Braun & Martel in San Francisco. John maintains a diverse trial practice in intellectual property, antitrust and commercial litigation. His practice emphasizes technology-related litigation, and he is the senior member of the firm¿s Intellectual Property Litigation Group.

    Mr. Cooper regularly represents technology companies in patent and other intellectual property litigation as well as in antitrust and technological defect litigation and disputes. He serves as primary outside counsel on litigation and business matters to several technology companies on intellectual property, antitrust and commercial issues relating to technology. Mr. Cooper has received industry and peer recognition throughout his 32-year career. He was selected as one of the Top 30 Intellectual Property Lawyers in California by the Daily Journal, named by Chambers USA as a leading intellectual property lawyer in California, and has been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America for over 10 years and in Northern California Super Lawyers. Mr. Cooper is a Fellow and former Regent of the American College of Trial Lawyers. He currently represents an organic soap manufacturer in SLAPP litigtion with a group seeking to establish standards for organic products.

    Card image cap

    Susan Kostal

    Freelance Journalist

    Moderator Susan Kostal is a freelance journalist who has covered legal affairs for more than 20 years. She has been a reporter and editor at the Daily Journal, and done writing and editing for California Lawyer Magazine. Her work has also appeared in the ABA Journal, San Francisco Attorney Magazine, San Francisco Magazine, and the Palo Alto Weekly. She also served as the legal editor at She is the recipient of numerous awards for her writing, reporting, and editing. She assisted with the conception and reporting of "Innocence Lost," a San Francisco Magazine feature nominated for a National Magazine Award in 2004,and her piece, "The Brobeck Mutiny," won a Bronze Award for reporting from the City and Regional Magazine Awards in 2003. She has worked with ALM producing audio and video CLE roundtable programs since 2005.

    Card image cap

    Similar Courses

    Card image cap
    97 minutes
    26 Words that Created the Internet - Basics of the Communications Decency Act Section 230 Safe Harbor
    This program will examine the basics of CDA 230 and its day to day affect for those who advise internet businesses as well as those who litigate against them. It will give practical guidance as to what extend internet companies can or should edit or censor the information their users contribute to their sites and to what extent those users will actually be liable.

    New Media Rights


    Add to Cart
    Card image cap
    76 minutes
    360-Degree of Investigation - A Roundtable Discussion Regarding Investigations of Debtors and Recovery of Assets
    This panel of lawyers and insolvency professionals with bankruptcy expertise will lead a roundtable discussion regarding investigation of debtors and recovering assets to enhance the value of a bankruptcy estate.

    American Bankruptcy Institute


    Add to Cart
    Card image cap
    58 minutes
    5 Ways Agreement AI Can Enhance Performance and Reduce Risk for Your Legal Team
    In high growth companies, contracting pain points can make your organization less competitive. Fortunately, your legal team has access to world-class, robust AI solutions that can help enhance performance of the legal team and avoid common business pitfalls. If deployed correctly, contract AI can be a legal team’s best friend - shrinking the knowledge gap across years and silos, acting as a digital assistant to automate repetitive tasks, and arming lawyers with tools that help them be proactive rather than responsive.



    Add to Cart
    Card image cap
    60 minutes
    60 Consumer Tips in 60 Minutes
    This panel of national consumer experts will provide you with the necessary tips for achieving great results in your consumer cases.

    American Bankruptcy Institute


    Add to Cart
    Previous Next