Saturday, September 15, 2018
"Protect the Protest" group forms to counter SLAPP's
David Ruiz has a major story on Electronic Frontier Foundation about the formation of a group called “Protect the Protest” to discourage SLAPP suits and assist targets of SLAPP’s in states with weak laws. SLAPP's are frivolous lawsuits by established powerful interests to force smaller competitors to spend legal fees defending themselves, a kind of legal bullying that comports with authoritarian thinking.
So far there is no federal SLAPP law. The problem also occurs in Canada, as the video below shows.
The EFF article goes into the issue of the lawsuit against Tech Dirt for disproving the claims of another party about “inventing email”. That case reminds me of the issue of questionable software patents based on frivolous claims.
I wanted to make a note about a previous post (Aug. 22), where I reacted to a “Timcast” (Tim Pool, with Ford Fischer from News2Share) by asking “who has the right to call himself a journalist?” I’ve made that claim myself, but I realize that what I offer is mostly commentary and interpretation, not original news (although sometimes I do see and film stuff as it happens). The reason this matters is that I generally do refuse to join other people’s narrow causes or to specifically advertise (with donate buttons) or represent them on my own social media pages. I was a bit glib there and will come up with a more detailed answer of my motives, on Wordpress, although a lot of it is there already.