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. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 May 2010 @ 1:49pm

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

    A right is just an ethereal thing we made up. It doesn't actually physically exist.

    Agreed. It's a statement of what ought to be which is, by definition, very ethereal and subjective.


    They're important, yes, but only if they can be reasonably relied upon to exist as a social/political agreement.

    I think rights are important not in spite of their enforceability, but because the first step in defining which rights should be enforced and how they're enforced is based on what you consider a right. Hence the importance of defining a Bill of Rights.

    The abstract idea of a right doesn't have much use by itself, but in the context of how it will be enforced, it does. But that doesn't mean that a right doesn't exist without enforcement.

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