Our Response To Yet Another Bogus Legal Threat From Australia: Go Learn Some Law

from the not-how-it-works dept

So… you may recall that, back in December, we received and responded to a ridiculous and bogus legal threat sent by one Milorad “Michael” Trkulja from Australia. Mr. Trkulja had sent the almost incomprehensible letter to us and to Google, making a bunch of claims, many of which made absolutely no sense at all. The crux of the issue, however, was that, back in November of 2012, we had an article about a legal victory by Mr. Trkulja against Google. The issue was that when you searched on things like “sydney underworld criminal mafia” in Google’s Image search, sometimes a picture of Trkulja would show up. His argument was that this was Google defaming him, because its algorithms included him in the results of such a search and he was not, in fact, a part of the “underworld criminal mafia.”

Either way, back in 2012 we wrote about that case, and Trkulja was upset that a comment on that story jokingly referred to him as a “gangster.” Because of that, Trkulja demanded that we pay him lots of money, that we delete the story and the comments and that Google delist all of Techdirt entirely. Immediately, we pointed out in our response: the comment is not defamatory, the statute of limitations had long since passed if it was defamatory, as an American company we’re protected by Section 230 of the CDA, and even if he took us to court in Australia, we’re still protected by the SPEECH Act. Finally, we suggested that perhaps he chill out and not care so much about what an anonymous person said in the comments of an internet blog over three years ago — especially when many people consider it a compliment to be called “a gangster.”

Either way, it seemed fairly clear that there was no actual “harm” to Mr. Trkulja, given that he didn’t even seem to care about it for over three years.

We had hoped that this would be the end of it, but apparently it is not. A few weeks back, we received the following, absolutely bogus legal threat from an Australian lawyer by the name of Stuart Gibson, who appears to work for an actual law firm called Mills Oakley. The original threat from Mr. Trkulja could, perhaps, be forgiven, seeing as he almost certainly wrote it himself (again, it was incomprehensible in parts, and full of grammatical and typographical errors). Our response was an attempt to educate Mr. Trkulja against making bogus threats.

However, now that he’s apparently wasting money on a real lawyer like Gibson, we will address the rest of our response to Gibson: Your letter is ridiculous, censorious and not even remotely applicable. Going to court over this will make you and your client look extremely foolish. But let’s dig in, because Mr. Gibson seems to think that blustery bullshit will scare us off. He’s woefully misinformed on this.

First off, if you send a legal threat and say “NOT FOR PUBLICATION” at the top, it’s tough to take you seriously, because such a statement is meaningless. We have no contractual agreement not to publish such information, and if you send us a bogus legal threat, we are damn well going to publish it:

And now on to the crux of Gibson’s argument: we said mean things about his client and somebody’s feelings may have been hurt.
If you can’t read that, it says:

The matter that you have published conveys false and defamatory meanings including (but not limited to) the following:

  1. Our client is a gangster;
  2. That our client by virtue of his legal claims is incompetent and unfit to be a litigant;
  3. That our client by virtue of his legal claims is a ridiculous litigant;
  4. That our client is a criminal and a participant in organised crime;
  5. That our client is unfit to be a litigant

None of these meanings is defensible. Our client is not a criminal and has never been a gangster nor associated with such persons. Accordingly there is no factual basis for the imputations published.

Let’s go through these one by one. First off, we never said that Mr. Trkulja is a gangster. In fact, in both of our previous stories about him, we noted that his concern was over being called a gangster when he was not one. To claim otherwise is Mr. Gibson lying in his threat to us. As a suggestion, lying in your legal threat letter is not a very good idea.

Second, at no point did we state that Mr. Trkulja was incompetent or unfit to be a litigant. We merely published his own words — admittedly including his misspellings, grammatical errors and general confusion — and our responses to them. If Mr. Gibson thinks this implies that his client is unfit to be a litigant, perhaps he should check his own biases.

Third, again, Mr. Gibson seems to be assuming the claim. We did say that the threat against us was ridiculous — an opinion we stand by. But we did not say he was a “ridiculous litigant.” Also, “ridiculous” is a statement of opinion and even in nutty Australia, “honest opinion” is not defamation. And it is our “honest opinion” that the threat is ridiculous.

Fourth, this is a repeat of the first claim. It was false the first time, and it’s still false. Repeating a false claim may allow Mr. Gibson to add to his billable hours, but doesn’t seem like particularly good lawyering.

Fifth, this is a repeat of the second claim. See point four above. And point two above.

So let’s be clear: we did not say that Mr. Trkulja was a gangster. We said, in our honest opinion, that he won a lawsuit the results of which we disagree with, and that his legal threat to us was ridiculous. This is all perfectly reasonable and protected free speech. Second, we posted Mr. Trkulja’s own words which, again in our honest opinions, do show the “ridiculousness” of his threat to us in that it was filled with grammar and spelling errors and was, at points, (again, in our honest opinion) incomprehensible gibberish.

Mr. Gibson, then suggests that arrogance is somehow defamatory:

If you can’t see that, it says:

Moreover your commentary that still resides on your website is an arrogant, false and poorly researched piece for the following reasons:

  • The reference to “gangster” is not “totally innocuous”. The reference is grossly defamatory and indefensible. One could not conceive a more defamatory reference than that. It may be a throwaway line in the United States but it is certainly not in this jurisdiction.
  • Judgments against US companies especially those resident in California are enforceable particularly monetary judgments.
  • You are not protected by the Speech Act.
  • This firm has enforced numerous judgments against corporations in your jurisdiction.
  • Your reference to “free speech” is absolute nonsense. Speech may be free but it is also actionable.
  • You did publish the comment. Under Australian defamation law, you have a duty as a moderator to moderate third party comments. If you do not and refuse to take action when given notice, you are liable.

First off, I may not be an expert on Australian defamation law, but I can tell you I find it difficult to believe that “arrogance” or “poorly researched” information is defamatory there. It certainly is not defamatory in the US, and, furthermore, Mr. Gibson, you are wrong that it was poorly researched. It was well researched and backed up with a great amount of detail — details I will note your own threat letter to us appears to be lacking. And I’m sorry if we come off as arrogant to you, but we’re allowed to speak our minds.

Next, Mr. Gibson, you “could not conceive a more defamatory reference” than calling someone a gangster? Really, now? Because I’m at least moderately familiar with some Australian insults and many of them seem way, way worse than “gangster” — which, again I will remind, you we never called your client (and, in fact, correctly noted that he was upset at someone calling him a gangster). And, yes, it is innocuous. No one cares that someone anonymously in a blog comment jokingly called your client a gangster. It was harmless as is fairly clearly evidenced by the fact that your client didn’t even notice it for over three years.

Next, I’ll note that for all your talk of enforcing Australian monetary judgments in California, you don’t name a single one. And, you’re wrong, because the SPEECH Act absolutely does apply, and you’d be exceptionally foolish to test this, though of course that is your decision to make. The text of the SPEECH Act is pretty explicit, first about when defamation rulings are enforceable in the US and (clue time!) it doesn’t count if the statements wouldn’t be defamatory in the US:

a domestic court shall not recognize or enforce a foreign judgment for defamation unless the domestic court determines that the exercise of personal jurisdiction by the foreign court comported with the due process requirements that are imposed on domestic courts by the Constitution of the United States.

Second, the law is also explicit that a service provider, such as us (in reference to comments published by readers on our site), if protected by CDA 230 in the US, would be similarly protected from foreign judgment:

a domestic court shall not recognize or enforce a foreign judgment for defamation against the provider of an interactive computer service, as defined in section 230 of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 230) unless the domestic court determines that the judgment would be consistent with section 230 if the information that is the subject of such judgment had been provided in the United States.

I recognize that you’re an Australian lawyer, not a US one, but I would suggest doing at least a tiny bit of research into the caselaw on Section 230 in the US. You will quickly learn that we do qualify as a service provider and that, no, we are not liable for statements in the comments. And, hell, even if we were, and even if the comments were defamatory under US law (which they’re not), the statute of limitations on those original comments is long past anyway.

And, yes, in case you still have not read the SPEECH Act, the legal burden will be on you here:

The party seeking recognition or enforcement of the foreign judgment shall bear the burden of establishing that the judgment is consistent with section 230.

Good luck with that.

In case you still decide to ignore the actual text of the law, you can also go digging through the legislative record on the SPEECH Act, in which it was made explicit that the law was designed to protect against such forms of “libel tourism.”

The purpose of this provision is to ensure that libel tourists do not attempt to chill speech by suing a third-party interactive computer service, rather than the actual author of the offending statement.

You can claim the law doesn’t apply, but you are wrong. The text is clear. You can claim that you have won judgments or monetary awards in the past. And perhaps you have, but if you try to move against us, you will be facing the SPEECH Act and you will lose.

So, given all of the above, we will not be undertaking any of your demands. We will not apologize as we have nothing to apologize for. We will not retract anything, as we did not make any false or defamatory publications. We will not remove anything from our website. We will not pay your client anything, whether “reasonable costs” nor “a sum of money in lieu of damages.”

Instead, we will tell you, as we did originally, to go pound sand and to maybe think twice before making bogus legal threats that you cannot back up.

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Comments on “Our Response To Yet Another Bogus Legal Threat From Australia: Go Learn Some Law”

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106 Comments
That One Guy (profile) says:

If at first you don't succeed, fail fail again

You’d think that if they had the time to write and send legal threat they could have taken the five minutes required to see how well other threats against TD have gone, but I guess all their focus was on wishful thinking and polishing up their bluffs.

If nothing else they could have found out that one of the quicker ways to get their letter made public was to try and claim that TD wasn’t allowed to make it public, might have saved them a little embarrassment.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Popcorn [was ]

It’s always entertaining, isn’t it? —when you’re not directly involved.

Otoh, just to keep a note of reality here, in what admittedly seems like a ludicrous situation(), it’s not really that much fun when a licensed professional vomits up some insane garbage on you.

It just isn’t that much fun.
 

() No. I have never actually seen a Seth Rogen comedy. I don’t like movies. No, really, I do not enjoy movies.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Popcorn [was ]

The comment is likely meant to refer to litigation. As soon as you are staring at any kind of legal threat, you should weigh your words carefully or you may find yourself on the hook. That is surely not fun.

That pressure is very problematic for most people. Techdirt is calling out some of the least viable legal theories they are presented with and that is brave/foolish and requires good legal advice to be the first.

There is a reason why these types of litigants (as in legal area) go after Techdirt:
Techdirt is seriously threatening the reputation of the litigants with their negative stories and as soon as the litigants feel threatened they respond with legal threats.

The world would be a far better place if less people sought litigious revenge when emotional.

John Fenderson (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Popcorn [was ]

Actually getting sued, regardless of how legally defensible your position is, isn’t just unFun. It’s actively damaging to you.

That’s why certain people and companies sue at the slightest cause: they have a good shot of winning by default because the defendent can’t actually afford to fo to court, and even if they lose they have still managed to cause some harm to the defendent. The smaller the defendent, the more harm was caused.

klaus says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Popcorn [was ]

“Techdirt is seriously threatening the reputation of the litigants with their negative stories…”

And yet I don’t believe I have ever seen Techdirt articles speak untruths. Their writers have opinions and express them, often colourfully. But that’s modern journalism…

That said, you are right in that they often paint themselves a target. It’s reach belies it’s size; it’s surprising just how often Techdirt comes right at the top of search results.

“The world would be a far better place if less people sought litigious revenge when emotional.”

Very true. Reading his original missive, I tend more to the view that Milorad Trkulja is impaired, possibly through alcohol or substance abuse. I feel a degree of pity for him.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Popcorn [was ]

I suspect it *is* fun if you run a website about the intersection of law and technology.

Mr Masnick may speak for himself on whether or not he finds it all that fun.

From my perspective, I’ve just seen too much. Too many times. Too much fucked-up shit in the legal system. Too much time and money tossed into the cesspit. Too much lasting, irreparable damage.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Gangster

I think you will find that your understanding that “Milorad ‘Michael’ Trkulja is a gangster” is incorrect; are you stating that “Milorad ‘Michael’ Trkulja is a gangster” based on the TD article, or the original one that he sued (and won) regarding?

Stuart Gibson of Mills Oakley has stated, “Our client is a gangster” and also has stated “That our client by virtue of his legal claims is incompetent and unfit to be a litigant,” but in both cases, he was claiming that this was the stated fact of TD, when in reality, he is the only one who is publicly linked with those statements on this site, other than the litigant himself.

AblativMeatshld (profile) says:

That our client by virtue of his legal claims is incompetent and unfit to be a litigant;

That our client by virtue of his legal claims is a ridiculous litigant;

I will say, it certainly seems to me, based upon Mr. Trkulja’s own words, that he is an incompetent, ridiculous litigant.

What’s more, Mr. Gibson, based solely upon his own words, seems like an incompetent, ridiculous litigator.

Anonymous Coward says:

The Streisand effect seems to still be in working order. A response by a reader, which has been long ago forgotten is once again dragged to the front page. The individual whom is offended by the text of that response has made sure everyone knows he is butt hurt over it. In trying to demand something be done about it, he has instead managed to call attention to that forgotten response for all the world to read about it again. He has managed to affix his name to this action and reinforced his name to the very thing he takes umbrage over.

Smooth move there ex-lax.

OldMugwump (profile) says:

It seems to me they're both gangsters

Someone please correct me if I’m wrong, but a gangster is someone who uses threats and intimidation to extort money out of people, right?

And Mr. Trkulja and his mouthpiece Gibson appear to be doing just that, to Techdirt and also Google. So doesn’t that make them gangsters? By definition? Am I confused?

Also, reviewing the comments here it does seem that they are both receiving a great deal of ridicule for the incompetent way in in which they’re going about it.

So, again by definition, that makes them ridiculous, no?

Anonymous Coward says:

Mikey "I am not a gangster" Trkulja

Hey, show some respect! Milorad “I am not a gangster” Trkulja is a “former music promoter”! You can’t think of a more honest and upright profession than that. The fact that a hitman wearing a balaclava attempted to kill him while he was dining in a restaurant in 2004 is a total coincidence. It could have happened to anybody.

Ehud Gavron (profile) says:

Competent Australian Lawyers

I’ve met some very competent lawyers in Australia… three of which I had drinks with in Melbourne.

If I recall correctly one of the discussions was about incompetent buffoonish lawyers making the rest look bad. At the time we were talking about Prenda Law but it’s equally clear that Mr. Gibson is an incompetent buffoon.

Mr. Gibson, should you choose to continue wasting your client’s money in this fruitless endeavor to squelch free speech you will not only prove yourself an incompetent buffoon, but also unethical for wasting a client’s money, failing to represent the law to them, and if you file this in a court of law, committing fraud upon the court.

I wish you well in crawling back into that fine little hole from which you came, and sticking to pretend-lawyering at the bus-stop you preach at daily. One day, no worries, Mate, you’ll earn enough for a car… or a law-book… or education to gain an understanding of the law.

Ehud Gavron
Tucson AZ US

Pixelation says:

From what I gather...

Milorad “Michael” Trkulja’s lawyers said…

“Our client is a gangster;
That our client by virtue of his legal claims is incompetent and unfit to be a litigant;
That our client by virtue of his legal claims is a ridiculous litigant;
That our client is a criminal and a participant in organised crime;
That our client is unfit to be a litigant “

Wow.

Anonymous Coward says:

Wow...

So he would like to punish others based on what his country finds offensive? That would certainly be a wonderful world to live in.
Say something about a religion and face execution for blasphemy from certain restrictive places in the world.
Say a word you didn’t know was offensive in another language: go to jail and pay 25000.
Ah yeah, and if you hate someone just write an offensive anonymous comment on their blog… if you do your research you can basicly decide their punishment.
This guy really doesn’t think beyond his next paycheck.

Anonymous Coward says:

Old Links

A bit of history from the archives…

Twitter Sued For Defamation By Someone Who Thinks It’s Responsible For ‘Publishing’ Tweets”, by Mike Masnick, Techdirt, Feb 21st 2012

 . . . Hardy and Meggitt have already “settled” the dispute between each other, with a rumored $15,000 changing hands, but Meggitt has now sued Twitter directly claiming that it “published” the tweet by putting it on its front page. . . .

From the linked story in the Sydney Morning Herald, by Michelle Griffin, “Man sues Twitter over hate blog” (Feb 17, 2012):

Mr Meggitt’s lawyer, Stuart Gibson…

At the time Mr Gibson apparently had his own firm, Gibsons Solicitors.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Old Links

Mr Meggitt’s lawyer, Stuart Gibson…

A more recent story from the Sydney Morning Herald (“Cases against Andrew Farley, Mike Kelly and Marieke Hardy show that Twitter users can be held to account for their comments”, by Michaela Whitbourn, Mar 8, 2014) provides an explicit mention of Gibsons Solicitors.

Stuart Gibson, of Melbourne law firm Gibsons, acted for Meggitt.

Combined with the previous links in my comment above, this forms a basis for my belief that the story refers to the same Stuart Gibson of Melbourne, who since August 2014 is now with Mills Oakley.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Old Links

Yes that is the same Mr Gibson.

And the same Mr Gibson who, according the to Gibsons Solicitors website—

Gibsons founder and CEO Stuart Gibson can be heard each Monday afternoon on 3aw radio with his ‘Legal Matters’ segment advising on Litigation, Media and IP cases.

That blurb is next to a logo for “3AW 693 News Talk” radio.

A sampling from the 3AW website—

• 3AW: September 22, 2010

Resident media lawyer Stuart Gibson, who features on the afternoon program with Denis Walter each week…

• 3AW: February 17, 2012: “Melbourne lawyer takes on Twitter”

Legal Matters with Stuart Gibson

Gibsons is one of Australia’s premier law firms …

• 3AW: February 26, 2015

… 3AW Afternoons legal expert Stuart Gibson…

LISTEN: Legal expert Stuart Gibson chats with Denis Walter

• 3AW: January 28, 2016

Stuart Gibson and Helen Suke from Mills Oakley Lawyers told Denis Walter…

The same Mr Stuart Gibson who has for a number of years appeared frequently on Melbourne talk radio.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Old Links

The same Mr Stuart Gibson who has for a number of years appeared frequently on Melbourne talk radio.

From the “Fairfax Media Ad Centre”: 3AW 693 News Talk Media Kit 2015, p.10, under the “Lifestyle” heading (bottom-far right in page):

Denis Walter provides many opportunities for discussion of the lifestyle issues that matter. With access to guests like … legal matters with Stuart Gibson…

Mr Gibson is even promoted as a selling point by the parent media company.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Old Links

The same Mr Stuart Gibson who has for a number of years appeared frequently on Melbourne talk radio.

A 2012 story with an accompanying photo in the Sydney Morning Herald, (“Payback for the internet’s creepy cowboys”, by Lawrence Money, Jan 30, 2012) characterizes Mr Gibson as someone who has “advertised heavily on radio”.

… Gibson, who runs his own law firm from an eighth-floor office in William Street, in Melbourne’s city…

… Gibson set up his own firm five years ago and advertised heavily on radio. He still does a regular radio spot on showbiz.…

Mr Gibson seems to have thrust himself into the public ear.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Old Links

Gibsons Solicitors

Blogger ‘stalked’ Twentyman”, by Jason Dowling, The Age, Dec 7, 2012

… One of Gibsons Solicitors’ clients recently won a defamation case against Google.

Melbourne man Milorad “Michael” Trkulja sued Google over images of him alongside a well-known underworld figure that appeared in search results…

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Old Links

… Mr Gibson apparently…

In the things that make you go hmmmm department…

According to LinkedIn (the link quoted above):

Partner
Middletons (now K&L Gates)
January 2000 – January 2004 (4 years 1 month) | Melbourne, Australia

But, according to ZoomInfo:

Middletons Lawyers – In Print
http://www.middletons.com.au, 2 Nov 2003 [cached]

Note that “Middletons Lawyers – In Print” is a dead link: 404. But from that cached page (cached by Zoom Information Inc. on 7/5/2006):

news March 2002

new staff

On 20 March Middletons welcomes a new partner to the firm – Stuart Gibson. Stuart was previously a partner with Cornwall Stodart and joins our growing Innovation and Technology Group practicing in intellectual property, entertainment law and information technology…

And from The Law Institute Journal — “Legal Action”, Feb 2000

Cornwall Stodart

This year former barrister Stuart Gibson has joined the firm as special counsel in the information technology/intellectual property group.

Upshot? Looks like the LinkedIn profile’s claimed January 2000 start date at Middletons is inconsistent with the other information. Instead, the two other sources say January 2000 would be Cornwall Stodart, and March 2002 would be Middletons.

Just something that makes you go hmmm. But these kinds of inconsistencies aren’t that unusual.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Internet games [was ]

Someone really should tell Mr Gibson that some asshole is signing his name to stupid letters.

Presumably, Mr Masnick has verified the provenance of this letter which purports to be from Mr Gibson of Mills Oakley. I had thought earlier about asking about that.

In my experience, though, it can be ummm… well… ummm… dangerous —yeah, that’s the word— dangerous to approach certain individuals without thorough preliminary reconnaissance.

Some people in this world are just not nice.

Now, terribly extensive precautions are probably unnecessary when dealing with a legitimate solicitor from a developed, English-speaking nation. But old habits, and…

Some people in this world are just not nice.

G Thompson (profile) says:

Oh deary me…

It seems Mr Trkulja has now named his elusive “Senior Australian Defamation QC” and it turns out to be a solicitor who seems to have a very dim understanding of how to communicate civilly and without showing confrontational bias on their clients behalf. Not to mention complete lack of understanding with US law, reciprocity, comity, and even parts of relevant Australian law too it seems.

I’m also wondering if they have held themselves out to be a QC/SC to their client (which would be a huge problem for them) or that their client is just a blithering egotist with a few too many roos loos in their top paddock (translation: batshit crazy)… I’ll go with the last one.

It also seems that as part of the appendix/addendum to the letter that a whole heap of extraneous and non relevant comments have been included with mine being in their as well. Does Mr Gibson imply that myself is also a party to these matters? Does he really want to cast a wide net and capture huge sharks that neither he nor his client really want to antagonise into making themselves and the firm of MO a nice hobby of distraction for someone who likes a challenge and loves making examples?

As to the letter itself. From first read I am of the opinion that:
* Mr Gibson and his client reside within the State of Victoria where ‘gangster’ is also used as a slang term;
* Mr Gibson and his client reside within Australia where both ‘arrogant’ and ‘poorly researched’ commentary are NOT actionable under any Act nor legislation whatsoever, though Irony is absolutely held up to be ridiculed and condemned.
* Mr Gibson by virtue of his antagonistic tone, threatening bluster and lack of candor should consider doing a LOT of CPD with emphasis on E≺
* That Mr Gibson’s client has shopped around until he has found a Firm idiotic enough (or IMO hungry enough) to take up his alleged wrong;
* That Mr Gibson mentions two ‘concerns notices’ with one (by his client) that could not of been a concern notice under the Act and even one that is irrelevant to Techdirt since it is to another entity entirely (Though I’m wondering if counsel for Google will understand why their concern notice – if they got one – has now been enjoined with this one – could this itself be a breach of privacy under Australian APP laws or worse – only time will tell);
* That Mr Gibson’s client based on patterns of behaviour over the last number of years could be a prime contender for an LRO (limited or extended) under the brilliant Victorian Vexatious Proceedings Act (2014) that now due to the attached comment section anyone in their (especially including myself) has a sufficient interest in the matter for standing.

As to the “not for publication” bold type, Mr Gibson like anyone in his position knows that it is pure bluster and intimidation and has no legal weight within Australia, or anywhere, whatsoever (even the stock template footer has no legal weight and is just a standard CYA statement) and like a lot of bullies will be quite unhappy and will most likely act out when called on it (a bit of due diligence before sending these sorts of things would go a long way to stop being looked at as a fool – though I digress).

Now to the “One could not conceive a more defamatory reference than that” statement in relation to the calling of someone a gangster in Australia. Mr Gibson like his client needs to consider all bane and antidote context and actually get out into the actual community at large and listen. Even a few hrs inside the local Magistrates’ Court whilst in session would remove you of that fallacious idea, or just stay in the marshmallow sensitive and constrictive cave you currently seem to both reside in.

Personally I would normally just refer you to the reply in Arkell v. Pressdram (1971) [unreported] but hey I’m bored and need a new hobby.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Trkulja v Gibsons Solicitors

Trkulja v Gibsons Solicitors Pty Ltd (Sup.Ct. Victoria 2011)

3 Mr Trkulja was not legally represented in the Magistrates’ Court proceeding. Nor was he legally represented in this proceeding. His command of English, especially written English, is limited.

Again, I do not know quite what to make of this information.

G Thompson (profile) says:

Re: Trkulja v Gibsons Solicitors

It just means that he sacked his Counsel and they still allegedly still sent him a bill for billable hrs that they may or may not have done.

The other point you asked below is obviously because Trkulja was bullshitting since his command of English is actually quite good and ALWAYS has been. What I make out of that statement is that someone has been confabulating to the court.

in other words Trkulja doesn’t like paying his bills, tries to act the victim by making people feel sorry for him and is a huge Egotist.

Am I correct Trkulja? Hey Gibson – Can you see that LRO is getting closer by the moment based on past histrionics? I like my new hobby!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Trkulja v Gibsons Solicitors

With this history, I’m totally surprised that Mills Oakley and/or Gibson took this matter on…

I’m curious exactly what “amalgamation” means in the following context:

Trademark Solutions by Mills Oakley Lawyers

About Us

Trademark Solutions by Mills Oakley Lawyers commenced in 2014, a product of the amalgamation of Mills Oakley Lawyers and Gibsons Solicitors

Does “amalgamation” in this context mean that Mills Oakley is the legal successor to Gibsons Solicitors Pty Ltd? I suppose, in this context, “amalgamation” perhaps might merely mean that Gibsons Solicitors was dissolved and all its assets, liabilities and personnel became Mills Oakley.

The exact meaning of “amalgamation” may not really matter, after all. But I’m simply curious. I have very little knowledge regarding the business structure of law firms in Australia.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Trkulja v Gibsons Solicitors

I believe that an “amalgamation” is what we call “merger” in the US.

Thank you, your link provides some illumination.

But the Australian Taxation Office interpretation that, under a specific section of a specific act, a merger is indeed an amalgamation, does not squarely address the question I was wondering about here, in this particular context.

So let me rephrase what I was curious about:

May we regard Mr Trkulja as having engaged in litigation with a organization now doing business under a name containing “Mills Oakley”? Particularly Mills Oakley Lawers?

Or does Gibsons Solicitors Pty Ltd retain an identity separate from Mills Oakley Lawyers in the context of the litigation with Mr Trkulja?

As I said before, it might not matter, after all. But I am curious.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:4 Trkulja v Gibsons Solicitors

[D]oes Gibsons Solicitors Pty Ltd retain an identity separate from Mills Oakley Lawyers in the context of the litigation with Mr Trkulja?

Some collateral info, which might perhaps be relevant to the topic under discussion here at Techdirt:

Domain Name:             gibsonssolicitors.com.au
Last Modified:           30-Jul-2015 02:12:31 UTC
Status:                  ok
Registrar Name:          NetRegistry
Registrant:              GIBSON SOLICITORS PTY LTD
Eligibility Type:        Registered Business
Eligibility ID:          ACN 101209401
Registrant Contact ID:   GIST1027
Registrant Contact Name: Stuart Gibson

Domain Name:             trademarksolutions.com.au
Last Modified:           26-Jun-2014 12:18:00 UTC
Status:                  ok
Registrar Name:          NetRegistry
Registrant:              GIBSON, STUART J
Registrant ID:           ABN 67893380501
Eligibility Type:        Sole Trader
Eligibility Name:        Trademark Solutions
Eligibility ID:          VIC BN B1938258H
Registrant Contact ID:   GIST1087
Registrant Contact Name: Stuart Gibson

Domain Name:             millsoakley.com.au
Last Modified:           11-Mar-2015 03:29:30 UTC
Status:                  ok
Registrar Name:          Melbourne IT
Registrant:              Mills Oakley Lawyers Pty Ltd
Registrant ID:           OTHER 079 480 943
Eligibility Type:        Other
Registrant Contact ID:   Z142602873117548
Registrant Contact Name: Colin Bourke

Otoh, these domain name registrations, as assets which were probably uninvolved in the litigation with Mr Trkulja, might not have any direct bearing on the specific question I was wondering about.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Network effects [was ]

Popehat has picked up this latest twist to the story, with some correspondence with the lawyer.

And elsewhere too out in the blawgosphere(), last Saturday, Greenfield at Simple Justice posted “Stuart Gibson’s Really Bad Idea” (Feb 13).

() Blawgosphere : No longer a kewl wurd? Ever a koool wird?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Network effects [was ]

I think blawgosphere is perfectly apropos for … Popehat

The sidebar over there is now displaying a ‘Quote of the Month’ which avers:

If you come to Popehat because you think that it is a law blog, you are sorely mistaken. Popehat is a geek blog, and it’s a matter of mere happenstance that most of the bloggers here are law geeks. . .

Just sayin’

Heck, that word might be defamation. Calumny! Per se.

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