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Singer sues noted historian over alleged depiction as alcoholic

Posted on 20th July, by Joanne in Defamtion. No Comments

An Irish traditional singer is suing historian Prof Diarmaid Ferriter claiming the cover of the academic’s book on the Pioneers depicts him as an alcoholic.

Tim Lyons, Athenry, Co Galway, claims a photo of him with two pints of stout on the cover of Prof Ferriter’s A Nation of Extremes – The Pioneers in Twentieth Century Ireland depicts him as an alcoholic. He is also suing the book’s publisher, Irish Academic Press.

Ennis Circuit Court heard Prof Ferriter said he had no input into the selection of the photograph.

Dismissing Prof Ferriter’s application to have the action struck out, Judge Gerald Keys said: “How could I deal with the defence of innocent publication without hearing from everyone?

You would have to have a full trial of the action to establish if the author is entitled to that relief.” Peter Clein, for Mr Lyons, said the relief of “innocent publication” was not available to Prof Ferriter in this case as he was the book’s author.

Neither Prof Ferriter nor Mr Lyons were in court yesterday. Judge Keys reserved the issue of costs pending the outcome of the full hearing.

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