Depp Awarded $15M in Defamation Suit, Heard Gets $2M for Countersuit

    Photo: AFP/Getty Images [via CNN]

    The Facts

    • A seven-person jury has found both Johnny Depp and Amber heard liable for defamation, concluding a high-profile trial that has taken place over the last six-weeks.

    • After 13 hours of deliberation over three days, jurors awarded Depp more than $10M for damages over Heard's claims that he abused her. Heard was awarded $2M in damages in a counter-lawsuit over comments made by Depp's lawyer calling her allegations a hoax.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    Depp has met an exceptionally high legal threshold to win his defamation case. As society grapples with progressing gender equality, Heard's apparent gaslighting and deliberate attempts at emasculation show us that Toxic Femininity is very real. Men have always been socialized to understand the implications of violence; we cannot succumb to the idea that women are inherently oppressed to the extent that they're not held to the same standards.

    Narrative B

    Women are the real losers here, regardless of the outcome of the case. This trial has set the clocks back to a time when women who spoke up and spoke out could be humiliated - a time before #MeToo. It has enabled damaging stereotypes of survivors, and dangerously misleading notions that a relationship can be mutually abusive, to proliferate. This will only leave victims more afraid to come forward.

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