Jan. 18 - Chicago Daily Law Bulletin
… Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation (SLAPP). The term was coined by George Pring and Penelope Canan, law professors at the University of Denver. A SLAPP is a meritless lawsuit aimed at preventing citizens from exercising their First Amendment rights. The goal of a SLAPP is to silence public critics by burdening them with the expense and distraction of defending meritless litigation—it "quells opposition by fear of large recoveries and legal costs, by diverting energy and resources from opposing the project into defending the lawsuit and by transforming the debate from a political one to a judicial one." Jerome Braun, "Increasing SLAPP Protection," 32 U. Cal Davis L. Rev. 956, 969-70 (1999).