Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Defamation Injunction: Google, Facebook Must Try Harder to Prevent 'Zemblanity'

Defamation and Injunction: Google and Facebook Must Try Harder: "Defamation of an Irish student has provided a perfectly formed example of why the fact that the Internet never forgets might not be such a good thing - and a likely candidate to be cited in arguments favouring the right to be forgotten. . It has also proved to be an outstanding example of what the judge in the case calls zemblanity.
In the Irish High Court, Mr Justice Micheal Peart had to deal with a case involving a student from Dublin City University who has faced a barrage of 'the most vile, crude, obscene and generally obnoxious comments' from 'nasty and seemingly idle minds' after a Dublin taxi driver posted a video clip on YouTube, asking for a fare dodger to be identified....the order made by Mr Justice Peart required experts for Mr McKeogh to meet with experts for the internet companies on how to go about removing all defamatory material Experts must be nominated within 14 days and the meeting between them must take place within the following 14 days. When reports have been prepared and exchanged, the matter can come back before the court to 'consider the position which emerges'.  Facebook were also ordered to produce an electronic copy of the fake Facebook profile that was relevant to the dispute.

The latest judgment is of interest partly because of the judge's thinly disguised despair at the defendants' refusal to co-operate with the plaintiff as the court requested: 'I do not understand what prejudice those defendants would suffer by trying to assist the plaintiff who is after all a customer of their services. But it was not to be. It might have avoided what turned out to be a marathon application for interlocutory relief … Every issue was hotly contested involving a proliferation of affidavits, and a veritable mountain of paper.' The attempt by the defendants to use the shelter of the E-commerce Directive 'immunity' for ISPs was postponed for consideration at trial. The judge seemed sympathetic to the use of data protection legislation to bolster the plaintiff's position. 'via Blog this'

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