AdvanFort v. International Registires

AdvanFort v. International Registries (5/12/15)

STATUS: Court grants motion to dismiss relating to section 230 defense.

E.D.Va.: Online Magazine Gets Section 230 Protection for Third Party Article
Technology & Marketing Law Blog
The plaintiffs alleged that the Maritime Executive was a partial information content provider.  The court's response is on the right track until it suggests that if the Maritime Executive pays for the content, then it might be a partial information content provider.


Mezzacappa v. O'Hare

Mezzacappa v. O'Hare (March 31, 2015)

STATUS: Court finds blogger not liable.

Pa.Ct.Comm. Pleas.: Blogger Isn't Liable for Anonymous Reader Comments
Technology & Marketing Law Blog
In this case, the Court says that the blog is an interactive computer service, Mezzacappa's claims of defamation and privacy invasion are publisher/speaker claims and it was apparent that the anonymous comments came from third parties.


Yelp v. Hadeed Carpet Cleaning

Yelp v. Hadeed Carpet Cleaning (4/16/15)

STATUS: Virginia Supreme Court rules in favor of Yelp.

Virginia Supreme Court Won't Force Yelp to Reveal Identities of Anonymous Commenters
Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press
In a victory for Yelp and its anonymous commenters, the Virginia Supreme Court ruled that the Circuit Court could not force the California based online review site to reveal the identity of users who had posted negative reviews of the California carper cleaning service.


Welch v. University of San Diego

Welch v. University of San Diego  (4/2/15)

STATUS: Court rules in favor of anti-SLAPP lawsuit.

Cal.App.: Law Professor Blogger Wins Anti-SLAPP Ruling But It's Hard to Celebrate the Win
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
On the surface, this is a nice courtroom victory for legal bloggers.  It suggests that legal blogging should be protected by both the fair reporting privilege as well as California's strong anti-SLAPP legislation.


Sletten v. Continental Casualty

Sletten v. Continental Casualty (March 19, 2015)

STATUS: 8th Circuit finds in favor of insurer.

8th.Cir.: Insurer Doesn't Have to Cover Online Libel Claim
In an interesting non-media decision, the 8th Circuit held that an insurer was not required to defend an insured who allegedly posted false and defamatory reviews of a business competitor.  Although the policy covered defamation in general, it excluded defamation with the intent to injure. 


Brannies v. Internet ROI

Brannies v. Internet ROI

STATUS:  Federal Court finds website free of wrong doing.

S.D. Ga.: Libel Claim Tossed
Courthouse News
A Massachusetts-based news website that allegedly portrayed a man as a child molester by linking his photo to the alleged sexual assault of a 10 yr old girl does not have to face libel claims in Georgia.


Burdick v. Superior Court

Burdick v. Superior Court (1/14/15)

STATUS:California Court of Appeals holds that there is no personal jurisdiction for case to move forward.

Cal.App.: No Personal Jurisdiction Arising from Allegedly Defamatory Facebook Postings
Washington Post (Eugene Volokh)
The California Court of Appeals recently held that posting allegedly defamatory statements on a person's Facebook page is insufficient in itself to create the contacts necessary to support personal jurisdiction.


Enjaian v. ALM Media

Enjaian v. ALM Media (12/23/14)

STATUS:Court grants defendant's motion to strike.

N.D.Cal.: Tweeted Article About Lawyer Facing Stalking Accusation Isn't Defamatory
Technology & Marketing Law Blog
Defendant's brought an anti-SLAPP motion under California's anti-SLAPP statute and the court grants it.


Brown v. Times-Picayune

Brown v. Times-Picayune (11/3/14)

STATUS: Appellate court reverses lower court decision.

La.App.: Appeals Court Reverses Dismissal of Lawyer's Defamation Suit Against
Claiborne Brown sued the organization and reporter Claire Galofaro for a headline that ran in the newspaper.


Huon v. Breaking Media

Huon v. Breaking Media (12/4/14)

STATUS: District Court will allow defamation claim.

N.D. Ill.:  Legal Blog Faces Defamation Liability For Mischaracterizing Prior Legal Proceedings
Technology & Marketing Law Blog
Popular blog Above the Law wrote two stories about plaintiff's brush with the legal system. After the plaintiff was acquitted, ATL added an update to the story reflecting this.  Plaintiff sued ATL in 2011 for defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress and false light.


Roca Lab v Does

Roca Labs v Does (11/14/14)

STATUS: Suit filed in Circuit Court.

Fla.Cir.: Roca Labs Sues Anonymous Commenters In Convoluted Plot To Get Negative Comments De-Indexed From Google
Roca Labs is suing 11 anonymous commenters who posted comments to, but it doesn't seem interested in who posted the comments; instead, it just wants to get a court order to pressure Google and others into no longer linking to those reviews.


Ringgold v. Radar Online

Ringgold v. Radar Online (11/6/14)

STATUS: Complaint filed in Eastern District court.

E.D.N.Y.: Radar Sullied Name of Tom Cruise Bodyguard, He Says
Courthouse News
When Tom Cruise sued Radar Online over careless reporting, the website doubled down by lying about his former bodyguard, a federal complaint alleges.


Concerned Citizens for Judicial Fairness v. Yacucci

Concerned Citizens for Judicial Fairness v. Yacucci (September 3, 2014)

STATUS: Florida appeals court reverses lower court ruling.

Fla.App.Ct.: Ruling: Judge Couldn't Block Website from Publishing Critical Stories
Palm Beach Post
The 4th District Court of Appeals on Wednesday slapped a senior judge in St. Lucie County for shutting down the website of a political committee after a judge running for re-election claimed it contained defamatory information about him.

Kinney v. Barnes

Kinney v. Barnes (August 29, 2014)

STATUS: Texas court sets precedent by ruling that court can't stop republishing of defamatory content.

Tex.: New Remedy for Online Defamation
Texas Lawyer
The Texas Supreme Court recently set precedent by ruling that a court can order an author to delete a defamatory posting, but cannot stop him from reposting the same statements elsewhere.


Cornett v. Gawker Media

Cornett v. Gawker Media (August 28, 2014)

STATUS: Federal judge refused order of early settlement.

D. Nev.: Surfer Loses Bid to Settle Her Spat with Gawker
Courthouse News
Noting a lack of desire on the part of Gawker, a federal judge refused to order an early settlement conference in a celebrity surfer's defamation case.


In re John Doe a.k.a "Trooper"

In re John Doe a.k.a "Trooper" (August 29, 2014)

STATUS: Texas court will not out identity of anonymous blogger.

Texas Supreme Court Voids Order to Identify Blogger
Austin American-Statesman
An Ohio company, seeking to sue a sharply critical blogger who wrote under a pseudonym, cannot use the Texas courts to discover the online author's identity.


Mayfield v. Fullhart

Mayfield v. Fullhart (August 21, 2014)

STATUS: Texas appellate court rules that single publication rule applies to the Internet.

Tex.App:  Single Publication Rule Applies to Online Publication
In the first Texas appellate decision to address the issue, the court held that the single publication rule applied to a television station's news report publicly available on the Internet.  The court also held that the discovery rule does not apply when an allegedly defamatory statement is disseminated via the mass media.


Westlake Legal Group v. Schumacher

Westlake Legal Group v. Schumacher  (8/19/14)

STATUS: Court dismissed case over improper service.

E.D. Va.: Court Sets Aside Default Libel Judgment and Injunctions Against Yelp
A Virginia lawyer and his firm had obtained a $200,000 default judgment over a negative review posted on Yelp.  Granting a motion to set aside the judgment, the Court held that service on Yelp was improper and dismissed the complaint as time barred or alternatively barred by Section 230.


Larue/Tucker v. Brown

Larue/Tucker v. Brown

STATUS: Appellate Court rules that republication of defamatory content restarts clock for filing a lawsuit.

Ariz. App.: Republication on Internet of Alleged Defamation Restarts Clock on Lawsuit Deadline
The Republic
A new appellate court ruling says republication on the Internet of an alleged defamation restarts Arizona's deadline for filing a lawsuit within one year of publication.


Grissom & Thompson v. Browning

Grissom & Thompson b. Browning (6/24/2014)

STATUS: Defamation claim filed.

Tex. Dist.: Law Firm Files Defamation Lawsuit Over Ex-Client's Yelp Review
Texas Lawyer
Grissom & Thompson alleges that Austin resident Joseph A. Browning used Yelp to publish "disparaging and blatantly false statements" about his legal representation by the firm. The Austin law firm's attorney claims the review appeared after the firm sued Browning for fees.


John Doe No.1 v. Burke

John Doe No.1 v. Burke (May 29, 2014)

STATUS: Appeals Court upheld Anti-SLAAP motion.

In its first decision to interpret the District of Columbia's Anti-SLAPP law, the D.C. Court of Appeals quashed a subpoena to an anonymous Wikipedia user sued for defamation.  The D.C. statute goes further than other jurisdictions in protecting anonymous speech by affording anonymous defendants the ability to file special motions to quash subpoenas for their identities. The Court first held that it had jurisdiction to hear an appeal from the trial court's denial of the motion.  On the merits of the motion, the Court held that plaintiff, an attorney, was a public figure who failed to show that edits to her Wikipedia page were made with actual malice.


Palmer v.

Palmer v. (May 5, 2014)

D.Utah.: Judge: KlearGear Can't Collect $3,500.00 From Couple That Left Negative Online Review
Ars Technica
A federal court judge has ruled in favor of a Utah couple who criticized an online retailer.

Default Judgment:

Kimzey v. Yelp

Kimzey v. Yelp (May 7, 2014)

STATUS: Court grants defendant's motion to dismiss.

W.D. Wash.: Yelp Wins Another Section 230 Case
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
We don't see arguments too often any more about Section 230 implications of star ratings.


Vazquez v. Buhl

Conn. App.: No liability for linking to — and praising — allegedly defamatory article
Washington Post (Volokh Conspiracy)
The Connecticut court concluded that NBC was acting as a “provider … of an interactive service,” that the linked-to-article was “information provided by another information content provider [Buhl]” (even in the absence of evidence that Buhl had deliberately submitted it to NBC or Carney), and that therefore NBC couldn’t be “treated as the publisher or speaker” of such information for libel purposes.
Opinion: Vazquez v. Buhl et al.

Seldon v. Magedson

Seldon v. Magedson (April 25, 2014)

D. Ariz. Ripoff Report's Latest Section 230 Win
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
Citing for the defense, the court says that screening content is immunized by Section 230.


Thieriot v.

STATUS: Appellate court reverses lower court ruling.

Do Online Media Get Treated Like Traditional Media  Under Libel Retraction Statutes?
Washington Post (Volokh Conspiracy)
The statutes vary from state to state; some have language that easily covers blogs and others don't.


Dancing Deer v. Liles

Dancing Deer Mountain v. Liles (March 12, 2014)

STATUS: Appeals court ruled that claim will be heard.

Or.App.:  Trashing Reception Hall Online May Be Libelous
Courthouse News
A man who posted a negative review online about an Oregon wedding venue must face defamation claims, a state appeals court ruled.


NCDR v. Mauze & Bagby

NCDR V. Mauze & Bagby ( March 11, 2014)

5th.Cir.: Texas Law Firm to Face Defamation Claims
Courthouse News
A Texas law firm will face defamation claims due to its advertising being commercial speech and not protected free speech.


Neuman v. Liles

Neuman v. Liles  (March 12, 2014)

STATUS: Court reverses trial court's ruling, allowing defamation claim to be heard.

Ore. App.: Online Commenter Critical of Business Can Be Sued for Defamation
The Oregonian
Thinking about posting a bad review of your latest dining experience, doctor your consulted or contractor you decided to hire?  Better think twice, if you don't want to be sued.


Intihar v. Citizens Information Associates

Intihar v. Citizens Information Associates (3/4/14)

STATUS: Court rules that website must be given notice.

M.D. Fl.: Court Rules Mugshot Site Entitled to 5 Days Notice of Defamation Suits
A plaintiff suing a mugshot website for defamation must give at least five days notice before filing the lawsuit because the website is a media defendant, a Florida federal court has ruled. No Florida appellate court has determined whether websites qualify as media defendants, the court noted.


Choyce v. SF Bay Area Independent Media Center

UPDATE (11/10/14):  Court finds in favor of the website.

N.D.Cal.: Websites Win $87,000 From Attorney
Courthouse News
Dionne Choyce sued San Francisco Bay Area Independent Media Center and its Internet Service provider Layer in 2012.  Choyce claimed the Media Center posted defamatory comments about him on its aggregate news site,


Choyce v. SF Bay Independent Media Center  (12/2/2013)

STATUS: Federal Court dismisses defamation claim.

N.D.Cal.: Lawyer Can't Grill ISP Over Online Defamation
Courthouse News
A lawyer cannot pursue defamation claims against the Internet service provider behind a post that said he "embezzled from the homeless", a Federal judge ruled.


Murray v. Huffington Post

Murray v. Huffington Post (October 25, 2013)

Coal Baron and Major Ken Cuccinelli Campaign Donor Sues Blogger for Defamation, Invasion of Privacy
Daily Kos
Robert Murray, owner of the Ohio based coal giant, Murray Energy Corporation, filed a lawsuit against a prominent liberal blogger and the Huffington Post.


TRG Motor Sports v. The Media Barons

TRG Motor Sports v. The Media Barons (9/30/13)

Cal.App.: The Unbelievable Parody Site that Sparked a Race Team's Losing Lawsuit
To really savor the utter ridiculousness of this tale, you have to go through the appeals' court ruling on the case, which describes in delicious detail the hilarity on the parody site.


Gillon Music'N Celebrations v Ting

Gillon Music'N Celebrations v Ting (9/24/13)

STATUS: Federal judge rules lawsuit cannot be brought.

D.N.J.: Promoter Can't Sue Client Over Web Site
Courthouse News
A music promoter who has appeared on "The Apprentice" and "Platinum Brides" cannot sue an unhappy client over critical postings on an online consumer complaint board.


Sanders v. Walsh

Sanders v. Walsh  (9/16/13)

STATUS: Appellate panel rules against online posters.

Cal.App.: Courts Crack Down on Web Posters Playing "Fast and Loose" with Facts
The Recorder
For the second time in many months, an appellate panel has ruled against posts on Yelp and similar sites.  The decisions cut against the grain of some previous appellate decisions which have held that readers expect posts on internet message boards to play fast and loose with the truth, setting a higher bar to defamation.

Bernath v. Tabitha

Bernath v. Tabitha (August 26, 2013)

STATUS: Yelp gets anti-SLAPP victory.

Ore.Cir.: Yelp Gets Another Victory in Anti-SLAPP Lawsuit
Technology & Marketing Law Blog
This case offers another data point on how 47 USC 230 and anti-SLAPP laws mutually reinforce each other.


Budget Van Lines v. Better Business Bureau

Budget Van Lines v. Better Business Bureau (8/20/2013)

STATUS: Court is allowing lawsuit over comments made on online review site.

Cal. App.: C.A. Allows Suit Against Better Business Bureau Over Rating
Metropolitan News Enterprise
A company that brokers household moving services can sue the local Better Business Bureau for disparaging its service on the BBB’s website, the Court of Appeal for this district ruled yesterday.


Bently Reserve v. Papaliolios

Bently Reserve v. Papaliolios (July 30, 2012)

STATUS: The appellate court that there was enough evidence to warrant the case to be heard.

Cal.App.Ct.:Blasting Your Landlord Online? Pick Your Words Wisely
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)

Commonwealth v. Cox

Commonwealth v. Cox. (August 2, 2013)

Pa. Super: Facebook Posting that Someone Has Herpes is Criminal Harassment
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
This is a ridiculous conviction, but due to 47 USC 230, at least the overzealous prosecutor couldn't go after Facebook for its role in this so-called harassment.

>>Opinion: - 1015072601679727.pdf

Small Justice v. Xcentric Ventures

Small Justice v. Xcentric Ventures (July 16, 2013)

D. Mass.: Attorney Uses Copyright to Attack Unflattering Web
National Law Journal
Federal law grants website operators immunity from defamation claims for third-party posts, so Boston lawyer Richard Goren used copyright law to go after a site’s parent company over a negative posting. It worked—Goren has persuaded the Massachusetts trial courts to assign him the copyright to the disputed material.And on Tuesday, he went to federal court accusing the website of violating his copyright.


Braverman v. Yelp

Braverman v. Yelp (June 28, 2013)

STATUS: Court applied Section 230 to preempt lawsuit.

N.Y. Sup.Ct.: Dentist's Defamation Lawsuit Against Yelp Preempted by Section 230


Burril v. Nair

Burill v. Nair (6/3/13)

STATUS: Lawsuit cannot be blocked says court.

Cal.App.: Counselor May Sue for Defamatory Remarks
Courthouse News
A California man cannot block a defamation lawsuit filed by a psychologist he accused of "criminal fraud and modern-day slavery" on CNN's website, a state appeals court ruled.


Stepanov v. Journalism Development Network

Stepanov v. Journalism Development Network  (June 12, 2013)

Md. Cir.: Court Dismisses Libel Claim Over Money Laundering Articles
The court held that a series of articles about international money laundering schemes were not defamatory of plaintiffs, a former Russian diplomat and an offshore corporate registration company. Taken as a whole, the articles could not reasonably be read to infer that plaintiffs knowingly engaged in criminal activity.


Green Tech v.

Green Tech v. (April 8, 2013)

STATUS: Suit filed in Mississippi district court.

Green Tech sues Online Watchdog for Libel
Mississippi Business Journal

DueAll Construction v. Smith et al.

DueAll Construction v. Smith, et. al (May 16, 2013)

STATUS: Complaint filed in Florida Circuit Court.

Fla.Cir.: Brandenton Residents Sued by Contractor for Defamation
Homeowners in Bradenton's crumbling Willowbrook condominium are in a fierce battle with their builder KB Home. That fight has landed two residents in a lawsuit.

Schon v. Kozan

Schon v. Kozan  (March 18, 2013)

STATUS: Complaint filed in Minnesota District Court.

Minn.Dist.Ct. Defamation Doesn't Mean Name Calling
CBS Philly
If defamation is like name calling, can you defame someone if you never actually mention his name?

Rakofsky v. Washington Post

Rakofsky v. Washington Post (April 29, 2013)

STATUS: Opinion delivered on April 29, 2013.

N.Y. Sup.: Judge Not Impressed by Rakofsky v. the Internet; Dismisses Defamation Claims
In a ruling on Friday, the Supreme Court of the State of NY basically shot down every singe on of Rakofsky's claims and granted the motions to dismiss of various defendants.  The court very carefully details the factual background and then explains why the motions to dismiss are being granted.


Arrington v. Allen

Arrington v. Allen (May 5, 2013)

STATUS: Lawsuit brought on May 5, 2013.

W.D.Wash.: Michael Arrington Files Suit Against Jen Allen, Alleging Defamation
"As a proximate result of the statements alleged above, plaintiff has suffered loss of his reputation, shame, mortification, and hurt feelings, all to his general damage."


Duc Tan v. Le

Duc Tan v. Le (May 9, 2013)

STATUS: Washington Supreme Court reversed Court of Appeals ruling.

Wash. Supreme Court Reinstates $310K Jury Award for Man Defamed as a Communist
Associated Press


Med Express v. Nicholls

Med Express v. Nicholls (March 25, 2013)

STATUS: Judge set date for an oral hearing on a preliminary injunction.

Med Express Sues Marginally Dissatisfied Customer for Posting Accurate Feedback on Ebay
Here's yet another example of companies using lawsuits to censor speech -- a situation that would be stopped if there was a serious federal anti-SLAPP law in place.


Fiddler's Creek Foundation v. Schutt

Fiddler's Creek Foundation v. Schutt (January 25, 2013)

STATUS: Suit brought in Florida Circuit  Court on January 25, 2013.

Fiddler's Creek Suits Become Latest in Libel, Slander Cases Involving Libel
Naples News


Lee v. Makhenivich

STATUS: Order given March 27, 2013.
S.D.N.Y.: You Shouldn't Need a Copyright Lawyer to Pick a Dentist
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
Lee became unsatisfied with his interactions with the dentist and posted critical online reviews to Yelp, DoctorBase and other websites.  Apparently unhappy with the reviews, the dentist invoked the Mutual Agreement to Maintain Privacy and claimed copyright ownership over those reviews.
> Opinion: Lee v. Makhenivich

Johnson v. City of Raleigh

Johnson v. City of Raleigh (3/29/13)

STATUS: Defamation claim dismissed on 3/29/13

D.N.C.: Court Applies Single Publication Rule to Dismiss Defamation Claim
A North Carolina federal court applied the single publication rule in an Internet defamation case in dismissing on statute of limitation grounds long running libel claims against several media defendants who has accused plaintiff of having a statutory rape conviction. It is the first trial or appellate court decision in the Fourth Circuit to squarely apply the single publication rule in dismissing an Internet defamation claim.


McGibney v. Moore

McGibney v. Moore (October 24, 2012)

STATUS:  Judgement entered against defendant on March 8, 2013.

Nev. Dist.: Revenge Porn Site Founder Loses $250k Defamation Suit
Ars Technica
In a decision at the Clark County, Nevada district court, Randazza Legal Group secured a $250,000 judgment against IsAnyoneUp site founder, Hunter Moore.  This particular defamation case was not related to Moore's revenge porn activities, but instead focused on statements Moore issued about McGibney.


Brompton Buildings v. Yelp

Brompton Buildings v. Yelp (January 31, 2013)

Ill.App.: Building Owner Can't Discover the Identity of Tenant Who Writes Bashing Yelp Review
Forbes (Eric Goldman)


Hingston v. Google

Hingston v. Google (12/21/12)

STATUS: Complaint filed in California District Court on 12/21/12.

C.D.Cal.: Filing Lawsuits in the United States Over Google Auto-Complete Is...
Citizen Media Law Blog
In false light and defamation actions, context is king.


Toups et al v. et al

Toups et al v. (1/18/13)

New Lawsuit Against "Revenge Porn" Site Also Targets GoDaddy
Ars Technica
So-called involuntary porn or "revenge porn" websites have continued to make more news- against the will of just about everyone featured on them.


Bierman & Weier v. Weier & Author Solutions

Bierman & Weier v. Weier & Author Solutions (court filed date)

Iowa Supreme Court: Internet Publishes Protected from Libel Suits
Des Moine Register
The Iowa Supreme Court has given protections against libel lawsuits to Internet publishes but have declined to extend them to average citizens, a ruling that media lawyers called significant.


Gordon v.

UPDATE:  Complaint answered on March 6, 2013.

D.C. Sup.: Were Fishbowl's Wendy Wednesday Posts Just a Joke?
Washington Post

Answer to Complaint:

Gordon v.  (1/17/2013)

 STATUS: Complaint filed on January 17, 2013.

D.C. Super.: Media News Site Sued for Libel
The BLT: Blog of the Legal Times
Wendy Gordon, a local publicist, claimed that the FishBowl DC launched an "unprovoked, online smear campaign" against her and published false information that hurt her reputation and her business.


Chevaldina v. R.K./ FI Management, Inc.

Chevaldina v. R.K./FI Management, Inc., No.3612-3189  (12/14/12)

STATUS: Blogger appealing preliminary injunction.

Fla.App.: Blogger Appeals Preliminary Injunction in Libel Case
The defendant wrote critical blog posts about a shopping center owner and its leasing practices and was sued for defamation and related claims.  In November a circuit court judge enjoined the defendant from writing "defamatory" blogs in the future.

Appellate Brief: Chevaldina v. R.K./ FI Management, Inc.

Noriega v. Huffington Post

Noriega v. Huffington Post, No. 1:12-cv-2006 ( 12/14/12)

STATUS: Complaint filed on 12/14/12.

D.D.C.: Huffington Post Facing $3Million Libel Lawsuit from Panama Lawyer
Legal Times
On August 2nd, an article called "The Primacy of the Rule of Law" was posted on the Huffington Post.  The problem, according to a defamation lawsuit, is that the author listed claims he had nothing to do with the piece.

Complaint: Noreiga v. Huffington Post

LeBlanc v. Skinner

LeBlanc v. Skinner No. 8310/08 (12/12/2012)

STATUS: Appellate Court rules in favor of defendant.

N.Y.App.: Calling Someone a Terrorist Online is Non-Actionable Opinion
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
Here the court- without reservation- says the online reference doesn't have the obvious serious implications that normally attach to being a "terrorist".

Order: LeBlanc v. Skinner

Martin v. Daily News

Martin v. Daily News, No. 100050/08 (Dec.3, 2012)

STATUS: Court grants Defendant's motion for summary judgment.

N.Y.Sup.: Court Grants Summary Judgment in Favor of the Daily News
Plaintiff Justice Larry Martin of the Supreme Court of the State of New York sued the paper and the journalist who wrote a series of blog posts and stories about judicial corruption in Brooklyn in 2007.  Justice Martin failed to show actual malice and the court granted the defendant's motion for summary judgment and dismissed the claims.

Opinion: Martin v. Daily News

Dietz Development v. Perez


STATUS: Virginia Supreme Court overturns preliminary injunction.

Va: Injunction Over Negative Yelp Review Overturned by Virginia Supreme Court
Washington Post
The Virginia Supreme Court has overturned a preliminary injunction against a Fairfax woman who is facing a $750,000 defamation suit for her negative reviews on Yelp and Angie's List. 

Order: Perez v. Dietz Development

 Dietz Development v. Perez (Oct. 31, 2012)

STATUS: Judge ruled in favor of Plaintiff in preliminary injunction.

Vir.Cir.: Judge Says Homeowner Must Delete Certain Accusations on Yelp, Angie's List
Washington Post
A Fairfax County woman being sued for defamation over negative reviews she wrote on Yelp and Angie's List must delete certain accusations and is barred from repeating them in new posts.

Memo in Support of Preliminary Injunction:

Shepard v. The Huffington Post

UPDATE:  A federal appeals court holds that there was no libel.

8th.Cir.: HuffPo Smearing of Candidate Not Libel, Says Court
A federal appeals court upheld the dismissal of a lawsuit accusing the Huffington Post of libeling a former U.S. Senate candidate from Minnesota by calling him an arsonist in a story headline.


Shepard v. The Huffington Post (June 2012)

STATUS: District Court dismissed the claims with prejudice after finding that it was barred by the statute of limitations.

D.Minn.: HuffPo Cleared for IDing Candidate as Arsonist
Courthouse News
A former Congressional candidate waited too long to sue the Huffington Post over an article that labels him an "arsonist", a federal judge.

Order: Shepard v. The Huffington Post

Spooner v. The Associated Press

Spooner v. The Associated Press
STATUS: Lawsuit settled in December 2012.

NBA Ref & AP Settle Suit Over Reporter's Tweet
Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal

Gilman v. Spitzer

Gilman v. Spitzer (10/1/12)

STATUS: Lawsuit dismissed on 10/5/12.

S.D.N.Y.:  Federal Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Against Ex-Gov Spitzer
New York Times
A federal judge on Friday dismissed a libel lawsuit against ex-Gov. Spitzer and the online magazine Slate for a column Spitzer wrote in 2010 about an insurance bid-rigging scandal.

Opinion: Gilman v. Spitzer

ZAGG v. Catanach

Zagg v. Catanach ( 9/27/12)

E.D.Pa.:  Business School Professors May Be Liable for Defamatory Blog Posts
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
The lawsuit involves a blog post "Don't Gag on Zagg".  They appear to have removed the post, but it was widely distributed and discussed.


Pippen v. Mont Software

Pippen v. Mint Software (9/26/12)

STATUS: Lawsuit dismissed.

N.D.Ill.:  Pippen Lawsuit, Shot Down by Judge
Pippen sued a ton of media outlets for defamation back in 2011 after they published articles claiming he was broke.

Opinion: Pippen v. Mint Software

Kahl v. Warner Brothers Entertainment (9/14/2012)

STATUS: Complaint filed on 9/14/2012 for claims including libel and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Cal. Super: "Reality" Actor Claims TMZ Defamed Him
Courthouse News
"Bachelorette" actor Kasey Kahl claims in court that celebrity gossip website defamed him by reporting that he was "jailed" for "allegedly huffing paint thinner".

Complaint: Kahl v. Warner Bros. Entertainment

Dillard v. Raycom

Dillard v. Raycom Media (8/24/2012)

STATUS: Complaint filed on 8/24/2012 in Lauderdale County Court.

Fla. Cir.: Complaint: Dillard v. Raycom Media
Courthouse News
Raycom Media and the Shoals Insider website defamed an attorney by reporting that he "was arrested for urinating in front of school children" though he was only peeing in the bushes, the man claims in Lauderdale County Court.

Complaint: Dillard v. Raycom Media

Seaton v. Tripadvisor

UPDATE 8/28/13

STATUS:  Federal appeals court says owner cannot sure website over list.

6th.Cir.: Owner of America's Dirtiest Hotel Loses TripAdvisor lawsuit
The owner of a hotel in Tennessee's Great Smokey Mountains that had the dubious honor of topping TripAdvisor's 2011 list of dirtiest hotels cannot sue the website's operator for defamation.


Seaton v. Tripadvisor (8/22/2012)

STATUS: Court dismissed libel suit.

E.D.Tenn.: Court Dismisses Libel Suit Against Tripadvisor Over Dirtiest Hotels List
"Tripadvisor's list is of the genre of hyperbole that is omnipresent. From law schools to restaurants, from judges to hospitals, everything is ranked, graded, ordered and critiqued...A reasonable person would not confuse a ranking system, which uses consumer reviews as its litmus, for an objective assertion of fact."

Opinion: Seaton v. Tripadvisor

Redmond v. Gawker Media

Redmond v. Gawker Media (8/10/2012)

STATUS: Court dismisses suit on anti-SLAPP grounds.

Cal. App.: Using Links As Citations Helps Gizmodo Defeat A Defamation Claim
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
Pehrpas the ultimate takeaway- that defamation claims against well-cited blog posts will fall under anti-SLAPP and lead to the plaintiff paying money to the defense- will help dissuade similiar lawsuits.

Order: Redmond v. Gawker Media

Ahmed v. Ethiopian Review Inc

Ahmed v. Ethiopian Review Inc. (8/6/2012)


N.D.GA.: Businessman Claims Web Zine Defamed Him
Courthouse News
A businessman claims in court that a magazine defamed him by accusing him of involvement in "human trafficking" of Ethiopian women serving as household maids in Saudi Arabia who are held in "slave like" conditions and subjected to beatings and other abuses.

>>Complaint: Ahmed v. Ethiopian Review

In re Philadelphia Newspapers

In re Philadelphia Newspapers (May 23, 2012)

STATUS: Court files Opinion on July 26, 2012 finding article is not a republication.

3d. Cir.: Newspaper's Hyperlink to Alleged Defamatory Article Not a Republication
Affirming dismissal of a defamation claim, the court stated: "websites are constantly linked and updated. If each link or technical change were an act of republication, the statute of limitations would be re triggered endlessly and its effectiveness essentially eliminated.:

Opinion: In re Philadelphia Newspapers

Hadley v. GateHouse Media

Hadley v. GateHouse Media (7/10/12)

STATUS: Defendant's motion to dismiss granted on 7/10/2012.

N.D.Ill.: Yet Another Case Says Section 230 Immunizes Newspapers From User Comments
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
One of the safest bets in Section 230 jurisprudence is that a traditional media publisher won't be held liable for user comments to its website.

>>Order: Hadley v. GateHouse Media

Lesher v. Doescher

Lesher v Doescher (April 16, 2012)

STATUS: District Court judge grants Defendant's motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict.

Tex. Dist.: Record Libel Award Gone As Fast As It Came
Courthouse News
A judge has thrown out the record $13.7 million jury award to a lawyer and his wife who said they falsely accused of sexual perversion, molestation and drug dealing in more than 25,000 online postings.

>>Final Judgment: Lesher v. Doescher

Ziyi v. China Free Press

UPDATE:  California Federal Court hearing the defamation lawsuit on January 25, 2013.

C.D.Cal.: Crouching Tiger Actress Demands Journalist Reveal Sources Behind Prostitution Story
The Hollywood Reporter
On Friday, a California Federal Court will play host to an important hearing in actress Zhang Ziyi's defamation lawsuit against U.S. based China Free Press and a journalist over published claims that she is a prostitute.

Ziyi v. China Free Press  (June 14, 2012)

STATUS: Complaint filed on June 14, 2012.

C.D.Cal.: Zhang Ziyi Shocked and Devastated Over $100 Million Prostitute Accusations in China
The Actress sued the U.S. based China Free Press for libel last week over a story that she carried on sexual relationships with a number of high-ranking Chinese officials.

>>Complaint: Ziyi v. China Free Press

Carreon v. The Oatmeal

Carreon v. The Oatmeal  (June 15, 2012)

STATUS: Complaint filed on June 15, 2012.

N.D.Cal.: FunnyJunk Lawyer Suing the Oatmeal cartoonist Inman Over IndieGoGo Charity Drive
Washington Post
Matthew Inman prides himself on being a satiric cartoonist who can wield that lacerating wit at his critics.  Charles Carreon prides himself on being a veteran attorney who has adapted to the newer terrain of Internet media law.  Now the two sides are on a potential collision course towards the courtroom.

>>Complaint: Carreon v. The Oatmeal

King v. Phoenix New Times LLC

King v. Phoenix New Times LLC  (May 25, 2012)

STATUS: Complaint filed on May 25, 2012.

Arizona Super: Cops Claims New Times Defamed Him
Courthouse News
A police lieutenant claims in court that the Phoenix New Times published libelous blogs accusing him of engaging in a cover up to scrub an arrest during the country music fest known as "titties and beer" bacchanalia.


Vo. v. Opinion Corp

Vo. v. Opinion Corp (May 22, 2012)

STATUS: Decision given by New York Superior Court on May 22, 2012.

N.Y.Sup.Ct.: Pissed Consumer Denied Section 230 Immunity and Can't Shake Extortion Claim
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
This adds to a long-simmering split in Section 230 jurisprudence: can a plaintiff defeat a motion to dismiss simply by allegint hat the review website wrote the review in question?


Central Basin Municipal Dist. v. Does 1-10

Central Basin Municipal Dist. v. Does 1-10 (May 10, 2012)

STATUS: Complaint filed on May 10, 2012.

Cal.Super.: Water Agency Draws Fire After Filing Unusual Libel Suit
Los Angels Times
"You can't defame the government", said Eugene Volokh, a professor at UCLA Law School.  "The government can't sue for libel even if it feels they can prove statements about it are not just false, but are lies.",0,2627275.story


Summit Bank v. Rogers

Summit Bank v. Rogers

STATUS: Lawsuit dismissed in May 2012.

Cal. App.: Court Rejects 1917 Law on Defaming Banks
San Francisco Chronicle
A state appeals court has ordered the dismissal of an Oakland bank's suit against a vociferous online critic and struck down a 95 yr old state law that makes it a crime to make false statements or spread rumors about a bank's financial condition.

>>Opinion: Summit Bank v. Rogers

Parks v. Vibe Holdings

Parks v. Vibe Holdings  (5/22/2012)

STATUS: Complaint filed on May 22, 2012.

N.D.Ga: Attorney-TV Star Sues
Courthouse News
An attorney who stars in "Real Housewives of Atlanta" claims in court that an Internet publishing company defamed her in articles accusing her of being "a crooked attorney who knows how to commit crimes, has committed crimes, and knows how to cover up her criminal activity".

>> Complaint: Parks v. Vibe Holdings

Lesher v. Does

Lesher v. Does ( 2/3/2009)

STATUS: Texas court awards $13.78 million judgment on April 24, 2012.

How Should We Measure Damages Over Defamation on Social Media?
Citizen Media Law Blog
On April 24, 2012, a Texas Court awarded a $13.78 million judgment to a Texas married couple in a case based upon an extended campaign of defamation on the website

W.J.A. v. D.A.

W.J.A. v. D.A. (Nov. 7, 2011)

STATUS: Court reverses trial court dismissal on May 16, 2012.

N.J.: Supreme Court Considers Presumed Damages, Public Concern in Defamation Cases
In an Internet defamation case, the court held that presumed damages are available in private plaintiff cases that do not involve matters of public concern.  Although (defendant) argues that his postings involved the public issue of allegations of failed justice,  a personal and subjective belief that error occurred in a trial does not transform an essentially private dispute into one that implicates the public interest.


EDrop-Off Chicago v. Burke

UPDATE (6/4/12)

STATUS: The Electronic Frontier Foundation files for case to stay in California on June 1, 2012.

C.D.Cal.: Group Wants Blog Defamation Case to Stay in California
Courthouse News
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a group dedicated to digital privacy rights, has asked a federal judge to keep hold of an online auctioneer's blog defamation claims, rejecting a bid to refile in Illinois, where there are allegedly fewer free-speech protections against frivolous claims.

>>Amicus Brief:

EDrop-Off  Chicago v. Burke  (May 10, 2011)

STATUS: Complaint filed on May 10, 2011.

C.D.Cal.: Reality Star Says Purseblog Posts Hurt Business
Courthouse News
An online auctioneer says in Federal Court it was falsely accused of bid-rigging on the message boards of the popular site


Price v. Gannett

Price v. Gannett (May 1, 2012)

STATUS: Court rules that Topix is protected by Section 230 on May 1, 2012.

S.D.W.Va.: Topix Protected by 47 USC 230
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
The plaintiffs alleged that pseudonymous posters made defamatory and otherwise tortious remarks about the plaintiffs on Topix.


Richey v. Walker

Richey v. Walter (May 3, 2012)

STATUS: Complaint filed on May 3, 2012.

GA. Super.:  Party Official Says Blogs Labeled Him Jail Bird
Courthouse News
Rashad Richey, Political Director for the Democratic Party of Georgia, claims in court that two bloggers slandered him as a "jail bird" and "recidivist".


UMG Recordings, Inc. v. Escape Media Group, Inc.

UMG Recordings, Inc. v. Escape Media Group, Inc. (March 20, 2012)

STATUS: Petition to Enforce Subpoena filed on March 20, 2012.

Cal. Super.: Grooveshark Tries to Force Digital Music News To Unveil Commenter, Ignoring First Amendment

Ouelette v. Viacom

STATUS: On April 25, 2012, the Judge rejected Plaintiff's 17 USC 512 (f) claim.

D. Mont.: 512(f) Plaintiff Can't Get Discovery To Back Up His Allegations of Bogus Takedowns
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
Ouellette sued Viacom for allegedly sending bogus take down notices he posted to Youtube.


In Re BitTorrent Aduly Copyright Infringement Cases

STATUS: On May 2, 2012, a NY Federal judge ruled against plaintiffs in several porn copyright cases.

E.D.N.Y.: Federal Judge Decries Blizzard of Copyright Troll Lawsuits
Ars Technica
On Tuesday, an obviously angry judge ruled against plaintiffs in several copyright cases.  His 26 page ruling is a devastating critique of this litigation strategy.

>> Order & Report and Recommendations

Lewis v. Rapp


N.C. Dist.: Court Awards Judge $105k in Libel Case
Associated Press
Rapp wrote in a blog posting that Lewis' endorsement violated the state's judicial conduct code, something the judge's attorney said wasn't true.

STATUS: Court of Appeals reversed and remanded for granting of partial summary judgment for Plaintiff on May 1, 2012.

Appeals Court Splits Decision in Judge Lewis Case
WWAY News Channel 13
The North Carolina Court of Appeals says a citizen blog post two years ago defamed a Brunswick County Judge, while another post did not.


American Heritage Capital v. Gonzalez

STATUS: On April 14, 2012 the Court granted a fee-short award to Gonzalez including attorney fees, sanctions and additional financial concessions.

Tex.Dist.: Texas Ruling Shows the Benefits We Would Get From a Federal Anti-SLAPP Law
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
This might be the first application of Texas' new anti-SLAPP law.

>>Order: American Heritage Capital v. Gonzalez

Brown v. Doe

STATUS: Motion to Quash filed on April 6, 2012.

Nev. Dist.: Lawsuit Filed Against Anonymous Commenter
Las Vegas Review-Journal
A reader comment on a Las Vegas Review-Journal story detailing a romantic relationship between a judge and former prosecutor has prompted a defamation lawsuit.

>>Motion to Quash

3M Company v. David, et al

UPDATE:  Media organizations submit brief stating that D.C. anti-SLAPP should apply.

D.C.Cir.:  Media Amicus Brief Argues that D.C. Anti-SLAPP Statute Applies in Federal Court
Citing to cases from the First, Fifth, and 9th Circuits as well as numerous district courts, the brief argues that "the remedies provides under anti-SLAPP laws comfortably exists "side by side" with Rules 12 & 56, providing critical protection to the media disseminating news and information on issues of public concern."

Amicus Brief:

UPDATE: Federal Court denies Motion to Dismiss on July 18, 2012.

D.C. Cir.: Federal Court Denies Motion to Dismiss Anti-SLAPP Appeal
An appeal in a defamation case against the late journalist Andrew Breitbart will proceed after a federal court denied a motion to have it dismissed. ( The Court also denied a motion to consolidate the appeal with 3M v. Boulter, in which the district court held the D.C. anti-SLAPP does not apply in federal court)


STATUS: Davis files Motion to Consolidate with Sherrod v. Breitbart on March 23, 2012.

D.C.Cir.: Lanny Davis Moves to Merge His Anti-SLAPP Apeal with Breitbart Case
BLT (Blog of the Legal Times)
Two of the most watched pieces of litigation surrounding the District of Columbia's relatively new anti-SLAPP law could merge if Washington attorney and political strategist Lanny Davis gets his way.

>>Motion to Consolidate:

Davis v. Avvo

STATUS: Lawsuit dismissed on March 28, 2012.

W.D.Wash.: Lawsuit Against Avvo for Lawyer's Profile Dismissed as SLAPP
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)
The key to this ruling is that Washington's anti-SLAPP law is more robust than Florida's mostly toothless anti-SLAPP protection.

>>Davis v. Avvo: Order on Special Motion to Strike

Shrader v. Biddinger

Shrader v. Biddinger (Filed August 6, 2010)

STATUS: Decision on February 12, 2012 dismissing parts of Shrader's case, along with granting attorney fees to Biddinger under Colorado §13-17-201.

D.Colo.: Emailing the URL of an Allegedly Defamatory Post Immunized by 47 USC 230--Shrader v. Biddinger
Technology & Marketing Law Blog (Eric Goldman)

Opinion: Shrader v. Biddinger

Pitale v. Holestine

STATUS:  Decision issued on all counts on February 27, 2012.

N.D. Ill.: For-profit college, former employee square off in Wikipedia defamation case
Ars Technica (Prof. Eric Goldman)Given the size and scale of its database, it's remarkable we don't see more US defamation lawsuits filed (rather than just threatened) over Wikipedia entries.

--Opinion: Pitale v. Holestine

Ratingz, Inc v. Adrian Philip Thomas, P.A.

 STATUS:  The EFF filed suit seeking declaratory relief on February 22, 2012.

EFF Files Suit to Block Threats Aimes at Lawyers Rating Site
Electronic Frontier Foundation
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has filed suit in federal court to block threats aimed at, a website that allows Internet users to write comments and rate attorneys.

--Complaint: Ratings, Inc. v. Adrian Philip Thomas, P.A.