Ontario Superior Court, York University v Bell Canada Enterprises, 2009 99 OR (3d) 695 (ONSC)

Document type
Court Decision
This case involves a defamatory email and web posting written by a faculty group at York University. The plaintiff was granted a Norwich order compelling two ISPs, Bell Canada Enterprises and Rogers Communications, to disclose information about the owner of a specific IP address so that a libel action could be served. To determine whether a Norwich order should be granted in an online defamation case, the court will consider 1) whether the applicant has provided evidence sufficient to raise a valid, bona fide or reasonable claim; 2) whether the applicant has establish a relationship with the third-party from whom the information is sought, such that it establishes that the third party is somehow involved in the acts complained of; 3) whether the third party is the only practicable source of the information available; 4) whether the third party can be indemnified for costs to which the third party may be exposed because of the disclosure and 5) whether the interest of justice favour obtaining the disclosure (para 13).
Topic, claim, or defense
Defamation or Personality Rights
Privacy or Data Protection
Freedom of Expression
Document type
Court Decision
Issuing entity
Appellate Domestic Court
Type of service provider
Internet Access Provider (Including Mobile)
Issues addressed
Procedural Protections for Users and Publishers
OSP obligation considered
Data Retention or Disclosure
Type of law
General effect on immunity
Strengthens Immunity
General intermediary liability model
Takedown/Act Upon Court Order