Tug-of-war rulings

by Andy Oram

On the one hand, a judge in Victoria, Australia just issued a
ruling
whose implications are that anyone anywhere in the world can download material and sue you in their local jurisdiction.
On the other hand, a California court has
ruled
that typical postings to public bulletin boards are immune from defamation suits,
(Discussed in
Slashdot.)
because they are clearly opinion rather than statements of fact.
These two rulings don't conflict directly, and the Australian one is much more serious.
I can't help thinking that it will set a precedent for the next Satanic Verses
type of dispute.