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Wikipedia The Courts

$10 Million Lawsuit Against Wikipedia Editors "Stragetically" Withdrawn 51

First time accepted submitter The ed17 (2834807) writes with new developments in the $10 million defamation lawsuit against a few Wikipedia editors. From the article: On the same day the Wikimedia Foundation announced it would offer assistance to English Wikipedia editors embroiled in a legal dispute with Yank Barry, the lawsuit has been dismissed without prejudice at the request of Barry's legal team — but this action is being described as "strategic" so that they can refile the lawsuit with a "new, more comprehensive complaint."
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$10 Million Lawsuit Against Wikipedia Editors "Stragetically" Withdrawn

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  • Tough call (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Crashmarik ( 635988 ) on Friday July 18, 2014 @07:36PM (#47486667)

    The man was acquitted of the charges. You would hope that his innocence would be the overwhelming message not what the government failed to prove.

  • "Stragetically" (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 18, 2014 @07:43PM (#47486701)

    Do the editors do any proofreading of these submissions whatsoever? Massive typo in headline and it's on the front page.
    No wonder this site is so shitty and dead these days.

  • Re:Tough call (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Friday July 18, 2014 @08:00PM (#47486769) Journal
    The trouble is that it's very, very difficult to encapsulate the fact that you can construct statements that are strictly true but which convey a false impression in any sort of legal standard that wouldn't be dangerously vague and subjective. And, while sometimes inescapable, 'vague and subjective' are not virtues in legal standards. Any such move would markedly expand the zone of dangerous uncertainty about what you might be dragged into court and ruined for saying, since you would have no way to reliably predict what might strike a given judge or jury as 'strictly true; but excessively insinuates'. In practice, given the cost of losing, the uncertainty zone tends to become an exclusion zone.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 18, 2014 @08:35PM (#47486927)

    In the early days of the Internet when Usenet carried a large proportion of total traffic, the technical community operated a technical measure to control Usenet abuse, the rather harshly titled Usenet Death Penalty []. Essentially, when behavior was deemed deeply pathological and all other remedies were exhausted, the abuser's traffic was cancelled as a measure of last resort until the abuse stopped.

    Lawyers are the new sociopaths on the Internet, abusing everything they touch instead of advising their clients to act as good network citizens. If they'd figured out Usenet back then, you can bet your bottom dollar that they'd have been abusing it too, and probably gaining themselves and their clients some richly deserved technical pushback. (It's a minority of lawyers to blame of course, but the majority just look the other way.)

    Alas those days are long gone, and there is no negative feedback anymore applied to parties who engage in Internet abuse as a business plan. TFS / TFA is about one such case, among thousands of others in recent years. Copyright and software patent abuse, ridiculous C&Ds, baseless DMCA takedowns, hostile domain removal or outright domain theft, these things all fall under the category of pathological behavior on the Internet.

    This situation was predictable in the absence of negative feedback.

  • by Frosty Piss ( 770223 ) * on Friday July 18, 2014 @09:46PM (#47487125)

    What assholes. They thought they would get a quick win from an easy prey. Luckily, the foundation is still good enough to protect its editors!!

    Heavy-handed Wikipedia editors with serious "WP:OWN" issues often run roughshod over articles, creating seriously biased articles that no one can change because these editors engineer "consensus".

    This case will be refiled, and I hope it costs Wikipedia a pretty penny, if not in money, than in reputation.

  • by wiredlogic ( 135348 ) on Friday July 18, 2014 @09:48PM (#47487133)

    I never heard of Yank Barry before but now I know all about his extensive criminal record.

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