writes to tell us that many journalists, bloggers, and media law specialists are concerned about a new ruling by a US Court of Appeals in Boston
. The new ruling is allowing a former Staples employee to sue the company for libel after an email was sent out informing other employees that he had been fired for violations of company procedures regarding expense reimbursements. "Staples has asked the full appeals court to reconsider the ruling, and 51 news organizations have filed a friend-of-the-court brief saying that the decision, if allowed to stand, 'will create a precedent that hinders the media's ability to rely on truthful publication to avoid defamation liability.' But Wendy Sibbison, the Greenfield appellate lawyer for the fired Staples employee, Alan S. Noonan, said the ruling applies only to lawsuits by private figures against private defendants, that is, defendants not involved in the news business, over purely private matters."