It’s an untrue allegation because what Rowling actually said was “I've ignored porn tweeted at children,” and defamatory because Rowling has deep pockets and British libel law sucks.
Since Rowling stan Twitter has discovered this tweet, a little more: The question at hand isn't whether Juan Mac's tweet was kind, or fair, or nice. It's whether the tweet was defamatory. It wasn't, not under any reasonable definition of that word.
Also, it turns out that Mac didn't even misquote Rowling in the original tweet. Image
Lots of Rowling fans in my mentions saying that the problem with the tweet in question was that it misrepresented Rowling by taking her initial statement out of context. But it absolutely did not do that.
The full sentence that Mac quoted a snippet of was "I've ignored porn tweeted at children on a thread about their art." No change in meaning. And neither the full tweet nor the thread in which the tweet appears alters the meaning, either.
Rowling said "I've ignored porn tweeted at children." That's an accurate quote, and one whose meaning is not altered by the context in which it appeared. She said what she said.
The problem with the quote isn't that it's stripped of context, it's that Rowling EXPRESSED HERSELF POORLY. And you don't have a right to prevent people from quoting you because you later regret how you expressed yourself. Not in any just legal system.
And suing, or threatening to sue, someone because they accurately quoted you in a way that you find unflattering is not something that anyone who actually cares about freedom of expression would ever do.
The weirdest thing about this whole dispute, to me, is the contention that Mac misrepresented Rowling's words in his tweet. Again, she said: "I've ignored porn tweeted at children on a thread about their art. I've ignored death and rape threats. I'm not going to ignore this."
To trim that quote down to "I've ignored porn tweeted at children" may be ungenerous, it may be unkind, but it doesn't fundamentally alter the substance of Rowling's statement.
If I were to trim it to "I've ignored porn tweeted at children [but] I'm not going to ignore this," I'd consider that an entirely fair condensation of the relevant part of the original tweet, and I don't see the omission of the second clause as changing the calculus dramatically.
If you believe that Rowling is misrepresented by a claim that she "ignored porn tweeted at children," your quarrel is with Rowling, who said it. She later clarified that it wasn't true—that she had in fact reported such material—but the claim originated with her.
Okay, so. I've gotten some answers to the questions in my last few tweets.
A lot of folks are saying that Rowling's original tweet clearly meant "I've chosen not to comment publicly on porn being tweeted at kids" and that the image tweet clearly intended to suggest that she had said she didn't have a problem with porn being tweeted at kids.
Neither of those strikes me as an inarguably obvious reading of the tweets in question, and the second in particular strikes me, frankly, as a misreading of the tweet, but yeah, it's an answer.
And one thing that brings home is that this dispute isn't a dispute about one aspect of the story, but about five or six different ones—Rowling's intent, Mac's intent, how to handle ambiguity, what libel law says and shouldn't say, and so on.
And yeah, I already knew that US and UK libel law were real different, but today has been quite an education on that front, too. The differences in fundamental principles—particularly wrt Scottish law—are clearly more numerous than I'd realized.
(And after having conferred with my fourteen-year-old, I also think that readers' relative familiarity with the mechanics and dominant tropes of contemporary shitposting are extremely relevant to their takes.)

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