Former LVRJ Publisher Admits He Was Behind Righthaven Lawsuit

from the ooops dept

Stephens Media and Righthaven have been involved in an important legal battle (mainly in the case involving the Democratic Underground, but it's popping up in other Righthaven cases) concerning who really are the parties of interest in the Righthaven lawsuits. Plenty of the defendants (and now three different judges) have said that Righthaven is really just a Wizard of Oz style front for a legal campaign by Stephens Media and its key publication, the Las Vegas Review-Journal. In fact, the basic argument is that the whole setup of Righthaven was simply a sham to try to isolate Stephens Media from potential liability. In the Democratic Underground case, the judge has even dismissed Righthaven from the case, but is allowing DU's counterclaims against Stephens Media to move forward (Righthaven is trying to beg its way back into the lawsuit).

One of the more entertainingly clueless players in this whole charade has been Sherman Frederick, the former publisher of the LVRJ, who was a major public supporter of Righthaven from the beginning, whose own words keep coming back to haunt both Stephens Media and Righthaven. Frederick appears to have a bit of a reckless overly-confident cowboy attitude, which is the kind of thing that gets people like him into a lot of trouble. We've already noted the rather blatant hypocrisy of Frederick multiple times. Originally he insisted that copying content from the LVRJ -- even small amounts -- was no different than stealing a corvette out of his driveway. And, yet, he's been caught posting infringing content, copying content from Techdirt and other blogs -- sometimes failing to even make it clear that he was quoting someone else.

But Frederick's biggest problem with his big mouth concerning Righthaven has been his habit of occasionally talking about Righthaven as if he controls it... because that's kind of the whole key issue here. Is Righthaven really a separate company... or is it merely a pawn for Stephens Media (or, worse, a law firm that is not licensed to practice law in Nevada)? You would think that sooner or later someone higher up in the ranks of Stephens Media (who demoted Frederick from publisher to mere columnist late last year right after the election) would tell Frederick to close his trap on these things, because he's only making it worse.

No luck. Frederick wrote a blog post on July 14th, blasting critics of the failed Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle, of whom Frederick had been a big booster during the election. In the comments to that blog post, some commenters challenged Frederick on certain points. And in a comment at 1:30 pm, Frederick directly noted, with regard to Angle: "I even sued her for lifting our material." He is, of course, referring to the fact that Righthaven sued Angle. We actually found it amusing that Frederick's "little friend," Righthaven would sue Angle at the same time that he, as publisher, endorsed her as a candidate. Would Frederick endorse a candidate who stole the corvette out of his driveway? Apparently.

Still... in that comment he directly claims that he was the one who sued Angle. That's a pretty big problem for Stephens Media when it's trying to claim that it's not the one suing, but it's Frederick's "little friend," Righthaven. And, indeed, it took all of about a day for at least one of the defendants in a Righthaven lawsuit to point this comment out to a court. I would imagine it does not look good for Stephens Media, in these cases where it's claiming that it's not the one suing, for its former publisher, who was intimately involved in the Righthaven plan, to come out and state publicly that, yes, in fact he was responsible for one of Righthaven's most high profile cases.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    Someantimalwareguy, Jul 21st, 2011 @ 2:22pm

    "Cookie jar?!! What cookie jar...?"


    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2011 @ 2:53pm

    Oh what a tangled web we weave
    When first we practice to deceive!
    - Sir Walter Scott

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Glen, Jul 21st, 2011 @ 3:57pm

    What kind of support?

    Wow. So you endorse and support a candidate yet sue them? With support like that, who needs opposition?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. icon
    Nastybutler77 (profile), Jul 21st, 2011 @ 4:09pm

    You can't handle the truth!!

    If they make a movie out of this whole Righthaven thing, they need to get Jack Nicholson to reprise his Col. Jessep role in playing Frederick.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Jul 21st, 2011 @ 6:11pm

    Mike, this horse has taken you far as it's going to.

    It's dead, stop beating it. Less than a comment per hour, without my charity here.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    Righthaven Victims, Jul 21st, 2011 @ 8:44pm

    It's quiet "ammo build up" time

    Next week is the key Pahrump hearing to show cause

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2011 @ 10:11pm

    Re: Mike, this horse has taken you far as it's going to.


    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jul 21st, 2011 @ 10:19pm

    He'll probably claim his account was hacked and he didn't make that comment.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. icon
    JustMe (profile), Jul 22nd, 2011 @ 4:12am

    Re: out_of_the_blue

    Funny, I was just thinking that there should be an entire blog devoted 24/7 to covering Righthaven. It would be like the funny pages, or the SCO trail.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    Frederick, Aug 2nd, 2011 @ 11:37pm

    Nice blog

    That is amazing article job, I must say great job!!thanks keep it up.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. identicon
    Frederick, Oct 24th, 2011 @ 5:45pm


    Nice post! thanks for the following information
    Best of luck for your future. You have done a good work. Keep it u! very great thanks.!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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