A judge has ruled in favour of Andy Lehrer in his suit against Tim Rourke regarding the pages about him on causepimps.ca and has been awarded full damages ($25,000) plus costs. Rourke was a no-show in court and his defence was struck.
After some initial confusion as to whether there was actually anything for easyDNS to do (Rourke had already removed the pages that inspired the lawsuit), we have received adequate clarification and in keeping with our Terms of Service and our Settlement with Mr. Lerhrer we have proceeded with a takedown against the causepimps.ca website.
We’d like to clarify something that came up in the course of all of this, with respect to the context of our use of the word “baseless” in this post. We never intended to convey that we felt Lehrer’s claim against Rourke was baseless – our position was always that it would be inappropriate for us to decide the matter or to take any summary action without a legal due process, that was all. What we did feel was that adding us to the suit as a co-defendant was baseless and all things considered, turned out to be counter-productive for the plaintiff. (There is also this article by a US law firm who compared the nuances of US vs Canadian defamation laws which seems to agree with us.)
If litigants want to pursue specific customers they will always be better served to leave the ISPs and the vendors out of it, that way they can truly sit where they belong – as impartial observers on the sidelines awaiting a legal decision one way or the other.
By involving vendors and ISPs, litigants are now fighting a war on two fronts; the vendor may have more at stake, may have deeper pockets, may have better legal representation, may bring unintended public visibility or may just be plain crazier and more stubborn than the litigants’ original target.
Despite incurring the expense of dealing with this lawsuit instead of summarily throwing our customer under a bus on a (then unproven) allegation, we have no regrets.
- We are being sued for refusing to takedown a website
- Update on Andy Lehrer vs easyDNS lawsuit
- Trial date set on the matter of Andy Lehrer vs easyDNS
- Andy Lehrer files ammended claim adding 3 new allegations against easyDNS
- easyDNS to be dropped from Andy Lehrer lawsuit
- via Techdirt: EasyDNS Sued For Refusing To Take Down Website Without Court Order; Then Hit Again For Writing About The Lawsuit
- A difference between United States and Canadian defamation law by Kelly Warner Law