Even After Being Disbarred, Jack Thompson Can File Misguided Mistargeted Lawsuits

from the good-luck,-Jack dept

Ah, Jack Thompson. The lawyer who made a name for himself years ago by trying to misdirect the blame for pretty much any violent action by any teenager by claiming that it was “the video games’ fault” has since been disbarred, and last we heard was getting scolded by Utah state politicians — the one state where politicians were still putting up with his unsubstantiated claims. And, of course, through it all he continues to claim that everyone is out to get him — with various video game blogs being a favorite target.

Of course, even though he’s been disbarred, it doesn’t mean he can’t continue filing misguided lawsuits on a pro se basis — and that’s what he’s done now. Eric Goldman alerts us to the news that Jack Thompson is now suing Facebook because some people on Facebook have said some mean stuff about him. Now, there’s no doubt that some people online have said incredibly mean and hateful things about Jack, and may have made statements that are potentially threatening. But, apparently, while filing all of these lawsuits and getting disbarred, Jack Thompson never bothered to read Section 230 of the CDA, which protects the service provider (such as, say, Facebook) from the actions of its users. Details, apparently, are not Thompson’s strong suit:

There’s a bit in there where he suggests that there’s some massive organized campaign against him, rather than just a bunch of random people having fun with him, because they appear to think he’s a bit out to lunch.

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Companies: facebook

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Comments on “Even After Being Disbarred, Jack Thompson Can File Misguided Mistargeted Lawsuits”

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24 Comments
Matt (profile) says:

Re: Declare Him A �Vexatious Litigant�

State-specific. Some have fee-shifting rules that make stupid plaintiffs pay the attorney fees of successful defendants. In federal court, it depends on the substantive law of the case. I have not read this complaint, so no idea if vexatious conduct will matter.

In some states, including mine, a person can be declared a vexatious litigant and thereafter requires court approval before he can file any action. Only one person has ever been so declared, and it was because he was suing the judges themselves.

Devin says:

Hmm

You know, as idiotic as his claims may be, people go way too far. There is absolutely no reason to threaten the guy. I think people’s actions almost make his case look even more realistic when these dumb kids who love their FPS and other violence-oriented games decide to harass him and threaten him, even if it is indirectly like on Facebook.

Threatening people is childish, but it should be taken seriously and as much as I dislike Jack Thompson’s views, I completely agree that something has to be done to show threatening people is NOT okay.

Quite a few people have been hurt or even died from scandals on social networking sites like Facebook and Myspace, like the girl who committed suicide after a neighbor woman pretended to be a young good-looking boy on Myspace, then ‘broke up’ with the girl, telling her that her life was worthless and she should kill herself. Granted, it is probably either the psycho woman’s fault for being crazy in the head, or the parents’ fault for not knowing what was going on, or not raising their daughter to believe in herself and not need boys to feel good about herself, but the social networking sites seriously need to be forced to hold some form of responsibility if they are just going to let things like threats–or worse–happen. Dare I say, we need internet police? A crazy concept, but innocent and unwitting people are being hurt by the nut-cases who use the internet as their weapon of choice.

In the end, the internet is a dangerous place, and as much as I agree with free speech and all of that, there is a line that has been crossed many times now.

Devin says:

Hmm

You know, as idiotic as his claims may be, people go way too far. There is absolutely no reason to threaten the guy. I think people’s actions almost make his case look even more realistic when these dumb kids who love their FPS and other violence-oriented games decide to harass him and threaten him, even if it is indirectly like on Facebook.

Threatening people is childish, but it should be taken seriously and as much as I dislike Jack Thompson’s views, I completely agree that something has to be done to show threatening people is NOT okay.

Quite a few people have been hurt or even died from scandals on social networking sites like Facebook and Myspace, like the girl who committed suicide after a neighbor woman pretended to be a young good-looking boy on Myspace, then ‘broke up’ with the girl, telling her that her life was worthless and she should kill herself. Granted, it is probably either the psycho woman’s fault for being crazy in the head, or the parents’ fault for not knowing what was going on, or not raising their daughter to believe in herself and not need boys to feel good about herself, but the social networking sites seriously need to be forced to hold some form of responsibility if they are just going to let things like threats–or worse–happen. Dare I say, we need internet police? A crazy concept, but innocent and unwitting people are being hurt by the nut-cases who use the internet as their weapon of choice.

In the end, the internet is a dangerous place, and as much as I agree with free speech and all of that, there is a line that has been crossed many times now.

Lucretious (profile) says:

Re: Hmm

….but the social networking sites seriously need to be forced to hold some form of responsibility if they are just going to let things like threats–or worse–happen.


You are either incredibly naive or just trolling.

So you beleive enacting some kind of legislation is going to stop people from being (and there’s no other word for it) assholes? You don’t see any kind of slippery slope insofar as free speech is concerned? Do you realize the amount of content that users put up on Facebook daily? It numbers in the tens of millions. Facebook is simply a tool to let people connect and is no more responsible for “allowing” that girls death than it is for juvenile idiots threatening Thompson. That’s why the Safe Harbors legislation was enacted. While the girls death is tragic, she could have reacted the same way to a phone call or a handwritten letter. Would you then accuse Verizon or the US Postal Service of “allowing” it to happen?

Philip (profile) says:

Re: Hmm

but the social networking sites seriously need to be forced to hold some form of responsibility if they are just going to let things like threats–or worse–happen.

You may be onto something there! We may want to also look into enforcing phone companies to take responsibility for threats over the phone, too. Oh wait…that’s right, that would be illegal. And why would it be legal on Facebook? Not to mention we’re not even talking completely within US borders anymore.

You do know there are already current laws in place for serious threats on life, right? And I do mean serious. Imagine the world if you got arrested every time you said “I’m gonna kill you!” even though you really had no intent to do so.

Yes, the world is full of childish antics, but you know what? That’s life. Learn to live with it and not take it so personal.

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