Victim Of Domestic Abuse Sues GPS Company For Helping Her Assailant

from the it's-the-tool dept

Michael Scott points us to the news of a new lawsuit that hopefully doesn't get very far, but which does highlight the frequency with which third parties are sued these days, not because they have any actual liability, but because they have money. In this case, a woman is suing a GPS vehicle tracking service, Foxtrax Vehicle Tracking, because her domestic partner used the service to figure out where she was and to attack her. It sounds as though the guy put the tracking device on the woman's car in order to stalk her. It's difficult to think that anyone could find the company liable here for the actions of the guy. I'm sure it's upsetting that the guy was able to track her, and she has every right to press all sorts of charges against the guy. But the GPS tracking company was merely the technology provider.

However, this is yet another example of what I've called "Steve Dallas lawsuits," after a Bloom County cartoon strip, I remembered from decades ago, where the character Steve Dallas (a lawyer, who gets beaten up by Sean Penn when he tried to take his photograph -- some things never change), explains why after going through all the options on who to sue, he chooses to sue the camera manufacturer, the made-up Nikolta, because it's "a major corporation with gobs of liquid cash...."

Filed Under: domestic abuse, gps, liability, third party liability
Companies: foxtrax vehicle tracking


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  1. icon
    Dark Helmet (profile), 3 May 2010 @ 1:15pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: If you want to make something criminal...

    Ah, I see the disconnect. I think of a right, probably incorrectly, as something that is reasonably gauranteed to me because I absolutely OUGHT to have it and can count on it. I think you're talking about it more as just the second part, something we ought to have as a matter of right and wrong.

    Which I guess to me makes the whole question of rights somewhat pointless. I don't care what I ought to have, or what's been promised to me, I only care what the reality is. We can talk about unwarranted searches all we want, but then we get the possiblity of wiretaps, and little to no reprecussions for those that took part. A right is just an ethereal thing we made up. It doesn't actually physically exist. They're important, yes, but only if they can be reasonably relied upon to exist as a social/political agreement.

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