Gawker Media founder Nick Denton was grilled by a lawyer for wrestling great Hulk Hogan on Tuesday morning.
The trial took a turn for the explicit when Denton was asked to read paragraphs from the article Gawker published to accompany a nearly two minute clip from a sex tape featuring Hogan. Denton held his composure as he read the sexually explicit text to the jury.
Denton told the court he stands by the X-rated video excerpt the media site posted.
“I felt he was a public figure,” the British journalist said, admitting that he never considered whether or not Hogan would be emotionally distressed by the publication of the clip and article.
“I think it stands up to the test of time,” he said of the piece the site published.
Several times during his testimony, Denton sparred with the lawyer as he was repeatedly told he wasn’t answering the questions being posed by Hogan’s legal team.
Denton called Hogan a “world famous celebrity” at one point when he was justifying publishing the clip.
On Monday, the trial — which is now in its second week — centered on salacious details as well.
An editor who worked on a disputed post on the Gawker gossip website was asked by a juror if she'd had sex with her bosses, and another editor described an editorial discussion about whether the video posted should include full-frontal nudity of Hogan.
Hogan, whose given name is Terry Bollea, is suing Gawker Media for $100 million for posting the edited video showing him having sex with his then-best friend's wife. The former wrestler has said he didn't know he was being filmed when the video was made. He contends Gawker violated his privacy.
After Denton's testimony, jurors passed notes to the judge asking several questions. In Florida civil trials, jurors can ask questions of witnesses and the court.
A juror asked Denton if he believed non-celebrities had a right to privacy in their own bedrooms.
"I don't think it's newsworthy to do a story on a private individual," Denton said. Hogan, he has maintained, is a worldwide celebrity.
"Sex is an important part of people's lives," Denton said.
He added, "I believe now that the piece had value. It was a story honestly told and it was interesting to millions of people."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.