Woodhull v. Meinel, No. D-202-CV-200700346 (N.M. Dist. Ct. filed Jan. 11, 2007)
Status: Trial court grant of summary judgment reversed, No. 27,959 (N.M. App. Oct. 24, 2008).

Plaintiff sued over a statement about her posted on defendant’s web site, www.happyhacker.org, on Oct. 14, 2003, alleging that the plaintiff had solicited defendant to hack into the website of the University of Florida student newspaper’s web site and remove a particular article, but that defendant had told plaintiff that doing so would be illegal. Defendant repeated and summarized the same alleged incident in a new post on Jan. 6, 2006, which also included an e-mail from the editor of the newspaper. Plaintiff sued for defamation on Jan. 11, 2007. The trial court granted summary judgment, holding that claims against the first posting was barred by New Mexico’s three-year statute of limitations on defamation claims; that claims from the second posting were also barred by the statute of limitations and the “single publication rule;” and that the suit was barred by section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

On appeal, the appeals court reversed the summary judgment as to the second posting, saying that the second posting was sufficiently different so that the “single publication rule” did not apply, and that whether the Communications Decency Act applies is a question of fact for a jury.

Links and Court Documents:
Case information and documents: http://www.citmedialaw.org/threats/woodhull-v-meinel

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