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motion for summary judgment.Summary judgment is not appropriate when the trial judge is required toevaluate “the credibility of witnesses with differing versions of material facts, . . . weighthe quality of documentary or other evidence, and . . . choose among competing or conflicting inferences.”
Orme Sch. v. Reeves
, 166 Ariz. 301, 311, 802 P.2d 1000, 1008(1990).
In defamation cases
it is the function of a jury to determine factually whether an allegedly defamatory statement is true
Fendler v. Phoenix Newspapers Inc.
, 130 Ariz. 475, 479-80, 636 P.2d 1257, 1261-62 (Ct. App. 1981)(emphasis added). “
Had there been a dispute over the facts underlying thedefense of substantial truth, summary judgment would have been improper.
reasonable factfinder could conclude that the contested statement 'impl[ies] an assertion of objective fact,' " then the statement is not protected by the First Amendment
Unelko Corp. v. Rooney
, 912 F.2d 1049, 1053 (9th Cir. 1990)(quoting
Milkovich v. Lorain Journal Co.
, 497 U.S. 1, 18 (U.S. 1990) (emphasis added).“In most instances,
it is for the jury to determine whether an ordinary reader or listener would believe the statement to be a factual assertion, mere opinion or hyperbole
Burns v. Davis
, 196 Ariz. 155, 165, 993 P.2d 1119, 1129 (Ct. App. 1999)(citation omitted) (emphasis added). “
The meaning of words and statements should not be construed in isolation
; rather, consideration should be given to the contextand all surrounding circumstances, including the impression created by the words usedand the expression's general tenor.”
(emphasis added). “If the jury finds that adefamatory statement of objective fact (beyond mere hyperbole) exists, it should then‘consider actual damage to [the plaintiff's] reputation in the real world by measuring the