by Mike Masnick
Wed, Mar 17th 2010 3:01pm
And here's a lawsuit that's going nowhere fast. Alex points us to the news of a NY accountant, Leo Kehoe, who is suing Craigslist for $1 million because someone insulted him on the site. He is also suing the anonymous user, who called him a "fraudulent scumbag" who "will botch up your tax returns and forget to submit them." However, it sounds like he got some very bad advice from his lawyer, who he claims told him: "Craigslist should have known the posting was false and untrue and would subject Kehoe to 'ridicule, disgrace and prejudice.'" It sounds like his lawyer is unfamiliar with Section 230 and the long list of caselaw that makes Craigslist not liable for the content created by users on the website. The individual person who wrote the post may have some liability (and even that may be a stretch), but Craigslist should be able to get out of this case pretty quickly. At some point, though, you would think that courts should start sanctioning lawyers who file lawsuits that clearly will be dismissed under Section 230. In the meantime, though, it would seem that a lot more people are now aware that someone out there was quite upset with the service he or she got from Mr. Kehoe than if he'd just let the Craigslist post go away. Also, isn't filing a questionable lawsuit even more likely to result in ridicule, disgrace or prejudice?
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