Northern Ireland promoter’s legal action against Dolly Parton’s sister

One of Northern Ireland’s top concert promoters is to take defamation action against the sister of country superstar Dolly Parton.

Friday, 5th November 2021, 4:09 pm
Updated Saturday, 6th November 2021, 7:39 am
Dolly Parton

James McGarrity has instructed lawyers to issue proceedings over allegations that appeared on singer Stella Parton’s Twitter page.

The Ballycastle-based businessman is also pursuing the social media giant for failing to remove an unsubstantiated posting about the payment of musicians. Papers are set to be lodged at the High Court in Belfast, his solicitor Kevin Winters confirmed.

Mr McGarrity runs JMG Music Group, which promotes around 300 shows across the UK and Ireland annually.

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Last month he was praised by Irish President Michael D Higgins for raising money to support fellow musicians during the pandemic.

Following those tributes two tweets about the promoter appeared on Stella Parton’s account, according to his case.

Despite repeated requests for Twitter to take down the postings, only one was subsequently removed.

Legal correspondence has now been sent to the company, asserting a failure to delete unlawful content.

The letter describes the posting as defamatory and damaging to Mr McGarrity’s professional and ethical reputation of working with high-profile artists in the music industry.

Citing a misuse of private information, his lawyers have demanded that Twitter takes down the remaining post as a matter of urgency.

Mr Winters revealed that lawsuits will be brought over the social media allegations.

The solicitor said: “Mr McGarrity has instructed me to take immediate legal action against Stella Parton for two defamatory and offensive tweets.”

Twitter will also face a claim for not removing content when requested to do so.

“The failure to act in a timely manner has caused my client significant reputational damage, leading to potential business loss,” Mr Winters contended.

“It is an example of how social media can operate in an entirely destructive way to seriously impact on people’s lives.

“Once again it is regrettable that individuals are having to resort to the courts at great personal expense and stress to them to sort out these problems.”

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