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April 12, 2004

Comments

92%.

Too easy!

(And I don't even read littlegreenfootballs... who needs the aggravation?)

Well, at least it's given him a nice persecution complex:

"Have fun, kids. Just don’t think too hard about who and what you are supporting when you link to that clever, amusing site."

Over its data transfer allocation. Gotta love Geocities...

I'm a little suspicious of the upcoming offerings by Lion's Gate Films. It's all a plot by Charles Johnson to inundate us with remakes of bad Dolf Lundgren movies. Or was that last bit redundant?

Spot on, Slarti. LOL.

hmmm...reading charles' response, it appears that if your hatred of an entire ethnic or religious group is grounded in "knowledge," that's okay.

Can anyone in the class see why this is not exculpatory?

Can anyone in the class see why this is not exculpatory?

Note, also, how he (artlessly) fails to answer my question about "nuking Mecca." It's like jazz, I fear: you have to listen to the notes that he doesn't play.

In the interest of balance, here's an example of an inappropriate way to respond to apparent trolls from LGF.

It is a federal crime to threaten someone over the internet. It is also a crime under many state laws. In Pennsylvania, for instance, it is a crime to even e-mail someone or post on their blog repeatedly with the intent of causing them "substantial emotional distress". After the Kos hit, people are going to start using all the means available to them.

C'mon, Mithras, they're serious 1st Amendment concerns here, as well as some pretty difficult-to-establish elements of the crimes you reference. And Ms. Cramer may have opened herself up to a false light claim in the way she deleted/manipulated certain commentators.*

Though, maybe a Philadelphia lawyer could make the case (I'm jus' a poor sod from Indy) . . . . ;-)

von

*Though with virtually insurmountable 1st Amendment concerns for the plaintiff.

Von:

There is a difference between posting insults and posting threats. It appears that some of those contributing abuse to Kathryn Cramer's blog stepped over that line.

Kathryn Cramer says that she and her two children received threats of physical harm - some of them, apparently, from a lawyer in California who's one of LGF's regular contributors. I'm a stout defender of the First Amendment, but I do not believe that it requires anyone to suffer mildly receiving threats by e-mail or any other means.

I've read the posts Jesu; since Ms. Cramer doctored the posts, it's tough to figure out who said what. Thoguh I'll grant you that the lawyer's comments were out of line. (I particularly liked how he seemed to suggest that he'd been studying law for "decades." According to his biographical data, he was born in 1970.)

I will say, however, that a mere threat isn't sufficient. There has to be a reasonable expectation it'll be carried through. I'm not sayin' Ms. Cramer doesn't have a case if she reaches to the limits of the law -- only that it does appear it would be a reach.

Now, the standard disclaimer: The foregoing is an opinion w/o the benefit of legal study, and should not be relied upon as legal advice.

Von, being not-a-lawyer, I'll have to take your word for that. I will say, though, that while I can take being called any kind of names with reasonable equanimity, if someone threatened me with violence, I'd take that rather more seriously (even if they lived three thousand miles away) and - if I were a parent - I suspect that I would be inclined to report any threats of violence against my children to the police, even if there appeared to be not the remotest chance that they would ever be carried out.

Fair enough.

if I were a parent - I suspect that I would be inclined to report any threats of violence against my children to the police, even if there appeared to be not the remotest chance that they would ever be carried out.

Fair enough indeed.

Von-
a mere threat isn't sufficient. There has to be a reasonable expectation it'll be carried through

Well, sure. You have to look at all the circumstances. But I think it does not violate the free speech clause to prosecute someone for sending a single anonymous e-mail death threat, especially if it were addressed to someone who blogs under their real name. Maybe you'd agree and I am just misunderstanding your argument.

Maybe you'd agree and I am just misunderstanding your argument.

Or I yours. I think we're in agreement.

Sorry, back to just "von". ("The Rantin' Vons" was for Thorley's amusement on the other thread.)

Von-
I think we're in agreement.

I'm glad, because criminal law is not my area.

Do you also agree that if a blogger links to another blog, and encourages his readers to threaten the owner of the blog he linked to (and they then do so), then that blogger can be charged with conspiracy?

Do you also agree that if a blogger links to another blog, and encourages his readers to threaten the owner of the blog he linked to (and they then do so), then that blogger can be charged with conspiracy?

Possibly: Conspiracy usually requires an agreement, plus an overt act in support of the conspiracy. (There can be other requirements, but I ain't going to get into them.) It would depend on what was said, and whether the act itself could constitute acceptance of the agreement -- i.e., as in a unilateral contract.

I have no idea if the bounds of conspiracy law stretch that far: I'm a strictly civil RICO lawyer, these days. (And I mostly practice patent law, truth be told.) The various RICO conspiracy charges I've been involved in didn't and haven't and don't now depend on the facts that we're assuming.

Whatta you do, Mithra?

Whatta you do, Mithra?

Sorry -- Mithras. My finger slipped.

Oh, and it occurs to me that there could be incitement, accessory, or other vicarious liability theories that might apply to your hypo.

Von-
I'm in transactional practice. Mainly do acquisitions right now, when blogging permits.

This whole topic is interesting to me. I think I'd like to do a bit more research and write something about the law of blogging, sort of a "what every blogger should know" kind of thing. I know there is going to be a session on law at bloggercon this weekend, too; unfortunately, I can't make it there.

Consider a co-authorship? I've got similar interests. (And just finished my first bit 'o academic legal writing since law school.* Kinda liked it.)

No pressure, of course. Don't even know if I got the time.

von

*On claims under 35 USC 291 for interfering patents. Rarely used section of the patent act that, for reasons I could explain but won't, is becoming relevant -- for the canny practicioner (w/ the well-paying client, of course).

Consider a co-authorship?

Hell, yeah. E-mail me.

Much has been made here of my supposedly "doctoring" posts. Let me be very clear on this: Words presented as by those submitting comments are exactly those submitted. I did not rewrite.

Here's what I did do:

(1) Interrupt repeatedly and deliberately, cutting off comments where I felt like cutting them off. These abridgements were always labelled.

(2) Make labelled editorial comments in response at the foot of submitted comments.

(3) In one case (or perhaps several cases) I added links. My additions were labelled. (This is where the complaint of my changing someone's meaning came from.

(4) Deleted many, many comments.

If anyone has a legitimate reason to need to know the full text of these comments posted to my blog, I have copies of all of the originals.

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