Legal Dictionary | Law.com

Law.com's online Real Life Dictionary of the Law. The easiest-to-read, most user-friendly guide to legal terms. Use it free!
Okay, first off, this is just completely hypothetical. I'm not going to (well, probably won't) do anything like this, but it's intended more for conversation, and to satisfy my curiosity. So here goes:

Lets say I wrote a song about someone. I titled the song after their first and last name and the lyrics consisted of lyrics about how that person broke my heart, how much I hate them and dislike them, how much of an idiot I think they are, and stuff intended to hurt them--but not intended to slander or hurt their reputation.

For example, if I wrote something like:

"Sarah Smith, you broke my heart
I hate you, you're an idiot for doing that
Someday you'll regret having done that
I hate you, go die, rot in hell you POS
and I think you're ugly"

Something like that. Keep note that I'm not really trying here, but something with the same overall meaning though. As you can see here, it's not really written in a matter-of-fact way, but written more as an opinion of that person. Now, lets say this song gets me really rich and famous, #1 on the charts, etc. and that person who it's named after who knows me knows its about them because of the title, lyrical content, and the situation that had happened.. I'm wondering if you can get sued over that?

I'd say that libel wouldn't really hold up, considering that the legal definition, according to a legal dictionary (Legal Dictionary | Law.com) says that in order for it to be libel "it must be a statement which claims to be fact and is not clearly identified as an opinion", so I'd take this to be, whether it's intentionally hurtful or not, and since whatever that song was not written in a manner that can be perceived as fact, but as opinion, that wouldn't be valid.

If this did happen, and if I was sued for this, as arrogant as this sounds, I wouldn't pay them a penny, I wouldn't apologize, and honestly, I'd tell the court/judge to **** off in front of his face and leave. Sure I'd get arrested, but if I write a song like that, that shouldn't give anyone the right to sue me. America has a little amendment called freedom of speech, and by me being sued for writing something like that, that obviously violates my free right to express myself through my words. I'm not slandering the person, I'm only publicizing my opinions of them, and how much I dislike them. And I'd think that they should suck up and get over it.

Sure it may be wrong on moral levels, but unfortunately for them, we operate off of a set law.

What are your opinions? Debate! Try to keep the political aspect out of it, please!