April 28, 2010
MySpace Postings Foil Another Litigant--Sedie v. U.S.
Sedie v. U.S., 2010 WL 1644252 (N.D. Cal. April 21, 2010)
I've previously blogged about online postings exposing litigant duplicity, i.e., arguing one thing in court but saying something contrary online. (1, 2) This case is typical of the trend I'm seeing. The plaintiff was on the losing side of a 2006 bicycle-meets-postal truck collision. Seeking recompense in court, the judge found the plaintiff was not entirely credible due to juxtapositions like this (citations omitted):
"Plaintiff testified that he spends much of his time lying down, and there are times that he does not leave his room because he is depressed about his overall situation. However, the Court finds this testimony is only partially accurate, and is exaggerated given the other evidence of his actual activities and his pattern of exaggeration. For example, Plaintiff's online writings show that his life was not constantly “hell on earth” as he claimed. Plaintiff maintained his pages on MySpace and Facebook since the accident , and as of January 12, 2010, his MySpace page listed various activities and hobbies, and friends of Plaintiff. Plaintiff wrote entries on his MySpace page, including one on June 3, 2007, in which he described painting as a frustrating activity when his arm hairs would get caught in paint. Yet painting was on the list of activities that Plaintiff claims were adversely affected by the accident. Plaintiff also testified that he had not done any painting since the accident, but the MySpace entry was written in the present tense at a time just prior to his microdiscectomy. Plaintiff testified that the MySpace entry was a joke, but the Court did not find the testimony credible."
Funny joke. Why does it always seem to be MySpace in these duplicity cases...?
April 19, 2010
Upcoming Talks Spring 2010
I've added some new talks to my schedule recently, so here's an updated list of my talks for the next couple of months:
May 6, 8-10 am: Obstacles and Opportunities: eCommerce on Both Sides of the Atlantic, a breakfast briefing co-sponsored by Bingham and HTLI. We'll be talking about the Google ECJ opinion, Tiffany v. eBay and other cutting-edge online trademark and copyright topics. In addition to me, the panel includes two Bingham partners and a very special guest: Terri Chen, Google's new chief trademark counsel, in one of her first public speaking venues since she has taken on her new role. Free CLE! Register here.
May 11, 12-1: I'll be speaking at the San Jose State library school about regulating reputation systems. See their event announcement. Seating at this event is very limited, so let me know if you would like to attend in person. A recording will be posted to the web about a week after this event.
May 28: EACLE Conference, Rotterdam. Assuming trans-atlantic flights have resumed by then, I will be speaking about my reputation research in the Netherlands. This may be a closed door event.
June 1, noon: I will give another version of my reputation talk at the University of Amsterdam. This should be an open door event, so contact me if you are interested in attending.
June 8, 8-10 am: Hot Topics in Blog, Social Network and Internet Law, a breakfast briefing co-sponsored by Greenberg Traurig and the High Tech Law Institute. Ian Ballon, one of the world's foremost Cyberlaw experts, and I will be speaking on the latest and most interesting Internet law developments. Free CLE! Register here.
June 25: I'll be speaking about online advertising at the Stanford E-commerce event.
Also, please save the date for our big Fall academic symposium on the First Sale and Exhaustion Doctrines in IP, November 5, at SCU. The event web page with a link to registration. This event will be especially timely given that the Supreme Court should be hearing oral arguments in Costco v. Omega around that time.