Why Lawyers And PR Don't Mix

from the not-all-PR-is-good-PR dept

This is not the first time it’s been noted that sending in the lawyers to try to “disappear” information a company (or individual) doesn’t like tends to have the opposite results. Remember Barbara Streisand trying to stop a photographer documenting coastal erosion from posting a photo of her property? Prior to that, very few people noticed the site. After the lawsuit began many more people went and saw the photo. The same sort of thing appears to be happening with Infinium Labs and HardOCP. While there was mumbling in the gaming community that Infinium’s Phantom gaming console didn’t really exist, not too many people were paying attention. In fact, by hiring a respected CEO the company was gaining credibility. However, now that they’ve been tangled up in a lawsuit for threatening HardOCP for an article that was six months old and pretty much off everyone’s radar screen, the questions raised by that article are suddenly getting a lot more attention. While the lawyers may think it’s best to sue, the internet makes it very likely that any lawsuits (or even threats of lawsuits) pretty much guarantee that they’ll be giving whatever content they want hidden even more attention. Someone should sit some of these lawyers down with some PR people and review each and every case where this has happened.

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Comments on “Why Lawyers And PR Don't Mix”

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Mark says:

counter-productive lawsuits

A similar case is the Church of Scientology, which for years has made a practice of suing anyone who “violates their intellectual property” by publishing Scientology’s documents online. In the process they have managed to silence a few critics, but they’ve also brought an enormous amount of publicity to a case which otherwise would have been completely obscure. In the end I’m sure a lot more people have downloaded those protected documents than would ever have thought to do so otherwise.

Fazookus says:

Why Lawyers And PR Don't Mix

…and sooner or later we’ll see Congress working on a bill to impose an automatic gag order on such things. All they have to do is tie it into terrorism somehow and it’ll be a sure thing.
I’m not really serious of course but I wouldn’t have thought the DMCA, the Patriot Act, etc., would have happened a few years ago, either.

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