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Cardi B Takes Bloggers To Court Over Prostitution Claims

The rapper is reportedly suing two women for defamation after they claimed she was a drug user with herpes who used to be a prostitute.

It's a murky area of law, and more so if you're famous.

Cardi B has allegedly filed a lawsuit against former stripper Starmarie Jones and blogger Latasha K, after both women made deriding claims about her.

The duo taped an almost hour-long chat about Cardi for 'unWinewithTashaK' in September last year, which has over three million YouTube views.

Jones claimed Cardi -- whom she allegedly used to live with in New York City -- had herpes and used to be a prostitute who did drugs like 'molly' and cocaine.

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According to TMZ, Cardi's lawsuit stated she's never been a prostitute nor has she ever used cocaine and molly. She also denied having herpes.

The website reported Cardi has given both women "an opportunity to retract their statements" but since they haven't done so, the lawsuit will go ahead.

Public figures (like celebrities) and non-public figures are treated differently in U.S. defamation cases. Public figures like Cardi B must prove malice, while non-public people need only prove negligence.

During her interview with Latasha K, Jones claimed Cardi had a herpes outbreak on her mouth she "tried to help her with" when they lived together.

She also alleged the rapper was formerly a prostitute who attempted to unsuccessfully get Jones to engage in the activity --  which is illegal in New York.

Starmarie Jones (left) chatting with blogger Latasha K about Cardi B. Image: YouTube.

In addition to their chat, Latasha K has allegedly posted 23 videos disparaging Cardi, which the rapper is reportedly seeking an injunction against.

One of the videos in question allegedly suggested Cardi’s daughter Kulture suffers from disabilities, inferring the rapper did drugs during her pregnancy.

Because blogging and podcasting do not require specific credentials, anyone can create and upload to media platforms and share them with an audience.

In 2017, Taylor Swift sent a cease-and-desist letter to a politics and culture blog featuring an article that tied her to white supremacist culture.

Instead of deleting the piece, the editor called the American Civil Liberties Union, which wrote back to Swift's lawyers defending her right to free speech.

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In Australia, bloggers can be sued for defamation if they publish false information about a person, name that person and share information that would cause “an average person to think less of that person”, according to law service Legal123.

An analysis of Australian defamation case law carried out by professors at the University of Technology, Sydney, found there were over 600 defamation cases here between 2013 and 2017.

Contact the author: samelia@networkten.com.au.