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


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. icon
    Joe Perry (profile), 3 May 2010 @ 6:20pm

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

    If there is no society to state rape is wrong and enforce the idea, then there is no right. I can't go as far as to find societies where rape is outright legal (although I bet there are some), but in many middle eastern countries it is so hard for a woman to prove rape (in Pakistan they need four reliable male witnesses, they have to be male) that it is basically legal.
    A better example I could come up with is that in some countries women are eligible to have sex very early in life, as early as when they have puberty. If a man had sex with a 14 year old in America it goes against some basic human rights not to be taken advantage of, because the 14 year old girl couldn't make an informed decision. In those countries, however, her rights would not be considered violated. Some people might hear about it and think it's morally wrong, but it's not in any way going against her rights.
    So yes, rights are entirely decided by a society, based on what the majority of people agree is wrong and how they enforce infringements. Your personal morals do not dictate the rights of you or those around you. Some people think drinking is morally wrong, other people still have the right to drink. There is no birthright that decides what is legally right and wrong universally that applies to everyone just because some government says that there is and you have no moral right not to be raped because people are going to have different morals than you. Maybe it's sick, but it's true.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Special Affiliate Offer

Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.