What does ‘reputation’ mean?

The definition of ‘reputation’ is hard to pin down and has varied from age to age and place to place. Let us know your understanding of the word here.

The definition of “reputation” is hard to pin down and has varied from age to age and place to place. Is it your public image, what companies call their brand? Is it as Article 17 implies – closer to the old idea of honour? Or is it about the intrinsic, inalienable, equal dignity of each and every human being? What does “reputation” mean in your country?

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Automated machine translations are provided by Google Translate. They should give you a rough idea of what the contributor has said, but cannot be relied on to give an accurate, nuanced translation. Please read them with this in mind.

  1. Reputation is what other people think about you. It’s inherently uncontrollable. You can have a ‘bad’ reputation in one era or society for something that is ‘good’ in another – a ‘fallen’ woman one day becomes a ‘liberated’ woman the next. English libel law treats anything that could damage your reputation as libellous – even if it might be true. A good libel law would focus on inaccuracy: is this story true or not? And does it cause serious and substantial harm? Claimants should have to show that a story is both false AND harmful before launching any action. http://www.libelreform.org

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Free Speech Debate is a research project of the Dahrendorf Programme for the Study of Freedom at St Antony's College in the University of Oxford. www.freespeechdebate.ox.ac.uk

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