Summary Judgment in libel against Big Brother contestant
Channel 5 and Endemol have been granted summary judgment in libel against Big Brother contestant Deana Uppal.The Claimant, Deana Uppal, appeared in the 2012 series of “Big Brother”. Ms Uppal’s claim arose out of two broadcasts.
The first on 25 June 2012, stated:
“With who? I’ll give her a fun game, I’ll stick this [showing the hair brush] up her **** ****, the stupid *****, I’ll give her a ***** epilator [thrusting the hair brush towards his groin]. I’m gonna play loads of pranks on her because she’s a ***** piece of ****, I don’t give a **** if I get pulled into the Diary Room, so it could be”
and then further on 19 July 2012:
“You know what, they used to do that in my Dad’s take away.”
“My Dad owned an Indian take away and they used to do the thing with their hands, maybe it’s the culture.”
The Claimant alleged that the meaning of first words uttered was that
“that the Claimant had below average intelligence”; “alternatively that the Claimant is in some way socially or intellectually inferior”.
Further meaning pleaded was that
“that the Claimant was sexually promiscuous”.
That had been implied from the way in which the hairbrush was used by the Big Brother contestant.
The second words broadcast on 19 July 2012 were pleaded to mean that
“that the Claimant was in some way socially or intellectually inferior to the other housemates because she was of Indian origin or descent”.
With regards to the 25 June 2012 broadcast, the Judge felt that the words were not capable of meaning that the Claimant was below average intelligence or was socially or intellectually inferior.
The use of the words “piece of ****” were vile abuse by the other contestant, but not defamatory. The rap by the contestant was not capable of exposing the Claimant to ridicule, and any reasonable viewer would understand that the person’s reputation affected was the contestant, and not Ms Uppal.
As to the broadcast of 19 July 2012, they were offensive racial stereotyping; they weren’t capable of meaning what the Claimant had outlined in her particulars. The words were a reflection on the person making them, not the Claimant. The claim was therefore dismissed, and summary judgment granted in libel in favour of the “Big Brother” producers, Endemol, and Channel 5.