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In a case that establishes that in Great Britain Internet service providers are publishers and liable at law for what they post, Laurence Godfrey, a physicist and university lecturer, received libel damages from Demon Internet Ltd. in an 11th-hour settlement with the ISP March 31 (Godfrey v. Demon Internet Ltd., 4 All E.R. 342, 1999, settlement reached 3/11/00). An initial ruling in March 1999 had held that Demon would be held liable because it had been put on notice. Demon Internet, which at the time of the postings was the largest ISP in Great Britain with over 90,000 subscribers, agreed to pay Godfrey more than $24,000 in damages and an estimated $320,000 in legal costs. Demon’s costs were estimated to be in the same range. The case had been scheduled to come to trial on April 3 in High Court in London, but the court was notified that Demon had apologized and agreed to pay damages and legal costs.

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