Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Lawyer for 'Skanks in NYC' blogger invokes 'douchebag' precedent; fights effort to reveal blogger's identity

Lawyers in the Liskula Cohen/"Skanks in NYC" imbroglio were back in court today, fighting over whether the judge should order Google to reveal the identity of the blogger(s) who allegedly defamed the Canadian model. Reports the Daily News:

A lawyer for the blogger argued before Supreme Court Justice Joan Madden that the raunchy digs at Cohen amount to nothing more than  "youthful, jocular, slangy" comments that are common on the Internet.

"Skanks, ho - if you Google it, you get millions of hits," said lawyer Anne Salisbury, adding that the comments are "obviously in a sarcastic tone."

She cited a recent ruling in which aNew Jersey judge tossed out a defamation suit filed by three women whose pictures showed up on the Web site "Hot Chicks With Douchebags."

"It's snide, it's trash talk, it's the bane of the Internet right now," Salisbury said before Madden.

What? No mention of the "skank" precedent that is actually on all fours (pun possibly intended) with Cohen's case?

As for Cohen's arguments, the Daily News reports:

Steven Wagner, a lawyer for Cohen, said the site is doing damage to the model's career and demanded that Google and its service take down the site.

"They impugned her chastity," he said. "It is affecting her business."

The law often presents interesting and difficult issues of causation. Attempting to prove that a 37-year-old's modeling career is on the wane because of a blogger's allegation of skankiness -- rather, than, say, because of her 37-years-oldedness -- is a causation issue that will surely be taught in first year torts classes for decades to come.

The AP reports that the judge "reserved decision" on whether to order Google to cough up the bloggers' ID.

UPDATE: Colorful and entertaining report from the courtroom in Slate's The Big Money. But "Cohen...sued Google"? We've been through this before: NO!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments here are moderated. I appreciate substantive comments, whether or not they agree with what I've written. Stay on topic, and be civil. Comments that contain name-calling, personal attacks, or the like will be rejected. If you want to rant about how evil the RIAA and MPAA are, and how entertainment companies' employees and attorneys are bad people, there are plenty of other places for you to go.