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Streisand effect

To curtail parody, stop being so parody-able in the aftermath of your decision to send cops after your Twitter critics [Radley Balko, more, earlier] Related: “Watch Repairer Goes Legal Over Tame Yelp Review, Streisand Effect Takes Over” [Geigner, TechDirt]

“A federal appeals court has tossed a $10 million defamation suit by a resort in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., that was ranked No. 1 on a 2011 ‘dirtiest hotels’ list by TripAdvisor.” The Sixth Circuit “said the list is opinion protected by the First Amendment.” [ABA Journal, Digital Media Law]

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Free speech roundup

by Walter Olson on March 27, 2013

  • Alarms re: proposed new UK code to regulate press, both print and electronic [John O'Sullivan, Andrew Stuttaford] “Why we won’t sign the press-regulation Charter” [The Spectator: Nick Cohen]
  • Also from the UK: “Police investigate Conservative MP Tim Loughton for calling man ‘unkempt'” [Telegraph]
  • “Teenager arrested for tweeting rap lyric containing the word ‘homicide.'” [Ann Althouse]
  • “CNN Argues that Requiring Captioning of Web Videos Would Violate Free Speech” [Disability Law, Courthouse News; more on new web accessibility push]
  • Administrator at Yeshiva U. hires lawyer to get posts removed from prominent law blogs, Streisand Effect ensues [Scott Greenfield]
  • Philly Mayor Michael Nutter sends letter to city human relations commission demanding investigation of Philadelphia Magazine for publishing article he dislikes [Ken at Popehat, Hans Bader]

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Free speech roundup

by Walter Olson on June 21, 2012

  • Courtesy Stanley Fish, Prof. Jeremy Waldron gets a long, favorable hearing in the New York Times for his let’s-suppress-hate-speech proposals [Opinionator]
  • On the other hand, free speech scores huge victory in Canada as parliament mostly along party lines votes to repeal notorious Section 13 of Canadian Human Rights Act, authorizing private federal complaints over alleged hate speech [Jonathan Kay]
  • “Christian Nation” historical writer and Texas curriculum reshaper David Barton sues critics; don’t let him find out what Ed Brayton keeps writing [Reason]
  • Pennsylvania bill: “Crime for Minor to Post or Send Messages That ‘Emotional[ly] Distress’ Another Minor?” [Volokh]
  • Norfolk, Va. business puts up a big sign protesting eminent domain scheme to seize its property; guess what happens next [Marc Scribner, Open Market]
  • Chris Evans nastygram to Lipstick Alley: Has Hollywood already forgotten about the Streisand effect? [Paul Alan Levy, Mike Masnick/TechDirt] Also at Public Citizen, the dispute over a boilermaker union official’s effort to unmask an online critic has now been settled (earlier);
  • Interesting bank case: “Employer SLAPPed for Suing Ex-Employee” [Shaw Valenza]

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After his nastygram aimed at Matthew Inman of humor site The Oatmeal backfired spectacularly — Inman turned his resistance into a much-publicized fundraiser for two nonprofit recipients, the National Wildlife Federation and the American Cancer Society — a California attorney proceeded to go a remarkable step further, with train-wreck consequences outlined at BoingBoing, Popehat, and Lowering the Bar. More: Inman, Lowering the Bar.

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And Matthew Inman’s retort to attorney Charles Carreon is already assuming mythical Internet status. [Popehat, BoingBoing and more, Kennerly, Ars Technica, Lowering the Bar]

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A Minnesota man named Aaron (no relation) Olson has met with no success in legal efforts to force his uncle to remove “innocuous [but surely awkward] family photographs” with snarky captions. [Christopher Danzig, Above the Law; Venkat Balasubramani/TMLB]

Max Mosley, former head of the Formula One racing organization, has been the subject of a number of lurid allegations in the European press. Now he is suing Google in France and Germany, and contemplating suit in California, “in an attempt to force the internet company to monitor and censor search results about” the allegations. “It is understood Google has removed hundreds of references to the defamatory claims after requests from Mosley’s solicitors. However, Mosley is attempting to force Google to monitor its search results so the material never appears” in the first place. [Guardian] More: Above the Law.

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“When people like Rachel Kane stand up to bullies, it makes it a little bit easier for each and every one of us to stand up to bullies,” writes Ken at Popehat about the blogger who runs a site making fun of some of the wares of the fashion chain Forever 21, and who’s not knuckling under despite a cease-and-desist letter from the store’s lawyer. More coverage: Atlantic Wire; press roundup at WTForever 21.

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“Streisand Effect”

by Walter Olson on June 15, 2011

It’s Nancy Friedman’s Word of the Week.

After being widely criticized for his handling of a criminal case, a lawyer is now suing his critics by the dozen, including a raft of leading law bloggers; the case is already being dubbed “Rakofsky v. Internet.” A list of the many defendants is here (PDF) courtesy of defendant Mark Bennett, who has also compiled a compendium of blog posts that discuss the new action. Among defendants and others talking back: Eric Turkewitz, Colin Samuels, Scott Greenfield, Avvo, Keith Lee.

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The Redskins owner’s libel suit continues to draw a hail of dead cats from, well, just about everyone (earlier).

Felix Salmon doubts things will turn out entirely as hoped for Charles Smith, the one doing the suing.

And yet Mr. Page’s demand letter seems only to have succeeded in getting his name, and that of his modeling agency, into wider circulation. [Ken at Popehat]

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The lawsuit against Justin Kurtz over his Facebook page “Kalamazoo Residents Against T&J Towing” hasn’t been working out so well for T&J. [Detroit Free Press, earlier]

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Attorney Marc Randazza responds (PDF) to the nastygram over Twitter and Facebook complaints by a dissatisfied Florida man about Route 60 Hyundai. [Russ Lemmon, TCPalm] Earlier: Dec. 26.

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December 4 roundup

by Walter Olson on December 4, 2009

  • Insurance mandate or no, New Jersey specialists tending to duck out of high-legal-risk procedures like mammography [Amy Handlin, Gloucester County Times via NJLRA]
  • Audi redux, or something different this time? L.A. Times endorses charges of sudden acceleration against Toyota [Holman Jenkins/WSJ, FindLaw "Injured"]
  • Ghastly idea of the year: Rep. Waxman wants federal government to be “responsible” for fixing journalism [Coyote, Bainbridge]
  • “Arkansas Judge Tosses Defamation Lawsuit Against Dixie Chicks Over ‘West Memphis Three’ Letter” [Citizen Media Law, Longstreth/American Lawyer]
  • Judge Weinstein: falsification by arresting officers seems “widespread” in NYPD [Balko, Greenfield]
  • U.K.: Carbon ration cards? [Krauthammer]
  • Nova Scotia, Canada: “A Couple in their 70s Wave at A Kid…And In Swoop the Cops” [Free-Range Kids]
  • Barbra Streisand loses suit over aerial photo of her Malibu home taken by environmental group; by suing, she ensures that many thousands more people will see the photograph, in what is dubbed “Streisand effect” [six years ago on Overlawyered]

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October 22 roundup

by Walter Olson on October 22, 2009

  • Unsafe at any read: new Ralph Nader novel panned by Chris Hayes, Washington editor of The Nation [Barnes and Noble Review via Suderman, Reason]
  • Microsoft says “most, if not all” customer data from T-Mobile Sidekick smartphones has been recovered, but class action lawyers say they’re undeterred [Seattle P-I]
  • Sue them all and sort things out later? Lawsuit over Air France Airbus crash off coast of Brazil names long list of aerospace suppliers as defendants [Reuters]
  • “No cash for this clunker”: opposition mounts to proposal for Massachusetts public law school [Boston Herald editorial via Legal Blog Watch, earlier link roundup at Point of Law]
  • Ralph Lauren experiences Streisand Effect over skinny-model nastygram [Althouse, earlier]
  • High-profile L.A. plaintiff’s lawyer Walter Lack speaks under questioning about role in Nicaraguan banana-worker suit against Dole [Recorder, earlier, background] And: “Dole on a Roll: Court Declines to Enforce $97M Judgment” [WSJ Law Blog, Bloomberg]
  • Miller-Jenkins lesbian custody case, much meddled in by conservative religious groups, recalls the ways divorced dads get cut out of their kids’ lives [Glenn Sacks/Ned Holstein via Amy Alkon, background]
  • Daniel Kalder speculates on why the New York Times editorially “purred with approval” of the new FTC blogger regulations in such an “impressively superficial” way [Guardian Books Blog]. More on FTC’s semi-backtracking on the controversy: Media Bistro “Galleycat”, Publisher’s Weekly, Galleysmith. And having been hoping for ages to get a link some day from blogging legend Jason Kottke, this one will go in the souvenir file [Kottke.org]

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