Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Indian Blogger Sued and then Dooced

This article is quite shocking. After merely included a link on his blog, the guy was sued and then fired (or, rather, Dooced). Here are some interesting points:
IIPM soon served JAM a legal notice on the grounds of defamation. It also complained to IBM, where Sabnis worked and he ultimately had to resign from his job.

“Blogging is quite a new phenomenon and, therefore, most countries have not yet formulated any legislation on it,” says Supreme Court advocate Pawan Duggal, an expert on cyber law. “The ‘blogosphere’ is in the process of obtaining official recognition and some basic working rules for blogs are being formulated.”

If the blog and the blogging site are posting third-party information, they are liable for it,” he says. “Both may be sued for defamation if the content is defamatory, abusive, or scandalous in nature.”
So, if that is correct, would Google then be liable for libelous content in Blogger blog (like this one)?
“I don’t think any limits should be placed on blogging, nor should there be any law censoring the content of blogs,” says Varna Sri Raman, a third-year student of Delhi University, who has written a blog in support of Sabnis.
Her blog, I think, is here.
But there are others who think the time has come for laws to be formulated to rein in bloggers. “I am quite sure that legislation will soon be be passed to ensure that people’s business interests are not harmed by these faceless and nameless bloggers,” says Arindam Chaudhuri, dean, Centre for Economic Research and Advanced Studies, IIPM.

This issue is hot. On this side of the Atlantic (or Pacific), we have a debate about BitchPhD being sued by student Paul Deignan at Purdue. He is "suing for stated and published libel" on her blog (see his comment below). For his take, his blog is here. Chris Clarke wrote a nice opinion piece recently on his blog Creek Running North. One of the reasons this story is getting so much attention, he writes:
Deignan is not only threatening to sue Dr. B. as well, but to reveal her real-life identity on his blog and elsewhere.
In the blogosphere, anonymity is key (if you want it). I imagine much of the backlash against Deignan has been fueled by his threats to BitchPhD's identity.

We'll have to see how these cases play out. Another worthy blog can be found here.


At 12:29 PM, Blogger deignan said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 12:43 PM, Blogger a blawger said...

Thanks for the comment. I've amended the post to, hopefully, portray the issues accurately.

At 12:40 PM, Blogger deignan said...

Wally Hettle (another defendant) is at UNI.

I am at Purdue.

At 8:50 PM, Blogger þΛųL jØŋαŦhΛŋ said...

all i gotta say is that some people have way too much time on their hands... i understood blogging as a recreational activity, albeit with a propensity to become addictive, but nonetheless, it's nothing that i'd be obsessing over... i feel really bad for some people... take that how you will...

thanks for the post though... it's definitely given me some food for thought about what i say (and don't say) -- or should -- on my blog...


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