ONLINE LIABILITY BLOG

Section 230 On Appeal (47 USC 230(c)(1))

Lawyer asserts copyright, forbids publication of cease and desist letter

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Ponder this one. Users (including, allegedly, Website Owner) post allegedly defamatory Statements about Company on Website. Company isn’t pleased, and hires Lawyer to submit cease and desist letter to Website Owner. Lawyer asserts in his letter that the Statements are actionable and, per the Ninth Circuit’s recent Roommate.com ruling, Section 230 does not protect Website Owner.

But Lawyer does not stop there. He asserts that the cease and desist letter is copyrighted, and forbids publication thereof. Website Owner proceeds to share the novel letter with Ralph Nader’s Public Citizen. Then things get interesting.

Check out Greg Beck’s account at PC’s Consumer Law & Policy Blog.

Think Lawyer will similarly prohibit publication of the takedown notice that is undoubtedly coming next, notwithstanding, inter alia, DMCA provisions that may expose Lawyer to liability for such a demand?

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Written by Michael Erdman

Friday, October 5, 2007 at 11:27 pm

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