Wednesday, August 19, 2009

"Hear no evil, see no evil, do no evil, think no evil!"

This article from the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press was sent to you by The Public Eye (vicpopuli1@gmail.com).

The Public Eye said "Shades of "Metis Mom, non?"

QUICKLINK New York ยท August 18, 2009
Judge rules blogger's identity must be revealed

A blogger lost his bid to keep his identity secret after a judge in New York City ruled that a fashion model had
established a legitimate defamation claim

Establishing a legitimate underlying claim is necessary under New York rules of discovery before a subpoena to reveal an anonymous speaker will be enforced, according to the court.

The blogger had created a site called "Skanks in NYC," and had featured model Liskula Cohen in several postings. One posting labelled her a "psychotic, lying, whoring ... skank."

The blogger had argued that the comments should be understood as opinion and hyperbole, and thus not stating anything factual that could be the subject of a libel claim.

But Judge Joan Madden
disagreed. The use of the words as captions to "sexually provocative" photographs of the model reinforce the sexual overtones of the words, Madden held, and thus "the words 'skank,' 'skanky' and 'ho' carry a negative implication of sexual promiscuity, and as such as resonably susceptible of a defamatory connotation and are actionable."

Because Cohen had established the basis for a libel suit, the judge ordered Google, which had hosted the blog through its blogger.com site, to reveal the identity of the blogger.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dear Public Eye:

Truth To Power
www.accesstoinfo.blogspot.com

Thank you for the link. To explain your comment to our readers.
While involved with the now defunct www.CyberSmokeSignals.com, Vanessa Everton asked to use the pseudonym metis_mom@hotmail.com. After the taxpayer financed Manitoba Metis Federation issued it's Statement of Claim against CSS.com (May 2005), Winnipeg Lawyer Murray Trachtenberg had me served with a Notice of Cross-Examination (January 2006).

Under its terms, I was required to bring copies of all e-mail involving metis_mom@hotmail.com which is how the MMF found out her identity. The process was conducted under oath, before a court reporter lasting a couple hours. A written transcript was eventually produced. The process no doubt cost Canadian taxpayers several thousand dollars.

During November 2006 Ms. Everton wrote a, "hear no evil, see no evil, do no evil, think no evil" letter to Federation President and Plaintiff David Chartrand. Unfortunately, Queen's Bench Rules prevent its verbatim publication on the internet. The following month she was dropped as a Co-Defendant.

Daryl Chicoine at the time with Orle Davidson Giesbrecht Bargen LLP represented her. He's now with Aikins Macauly & Thorvaldson LLP.

Sincerely,

Clare L. Pieuk

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