Update: Next Magazine ordered to pay shampoo maker HK$3million for defamation

May 23, 2016

by Doreen Weisenhaus with contributions by Rick Glofcheski and Yan Mei Ning (Expanded Second Edition, Hong Kong University Press 2014)

May 23, 2016 (South China Morning Post) — Next Magazine was fined HK$3 million by the High Court for defaming a mainland manufacturer of a herbal shampoo that was once advertised by film star Jackie Chan.
The fine was less than 0.5 per cent of the record HK$630 million in damages that BaWang International was seeking.
Judge David Lok Kai-hong reduced the amount, saying the court had to ensure the damages awarded would not be an impediment to freedom of expression.
He also said Next Digital, which owns the publication, could not be held responsible according to mainland law for the news spreading across the border, and that BaWang could not sue for losses in the city suffered by its two Hong Kong subsidiaries instead of the parent firm.
But Lok criticised the magazine for its “naive and unprofessional” conduct in publishing the defamatory article, which claimed that BaWang’s shampoo could cause cancer.
Next Digital said it would consider filing an appeal.

Full SCMP story here.

“Next hit with $3m ruling,” The Standard, May 24, 2016