Saturday, November 14, 2009

Internet law

Judge Rules Web Commenter Will Be Unmasked to Mom of Criticized Teen
From ABA Journal Weekly, Posted Nov 9, 2009, 04:00 pm CST By Martha Neil

An Illinois judge has decided that an anonymous commenter on a newspaper website will be unmasked, even though the mother of a teen about whom "Hipcheck16" allegedly made "deeply disturbing" comments hasn't yet decided whether to sue over the posting.

The mother, Lisa Stone, is a trustee of Buffalo Grove in suburban Chicago. The comments on the Daily Herald's website were made just before an April 7 election in which she won a seat, reports the Chicago Tribune.

Stone calls the posted comments about her 15-year-old son "deeply disturbing," but they aren't specifically described in the article.

Attorney Michael Furling, who represents Hipcheck16, says he will talk to his client about whether to appeal today's ruling by Cook County Circuit Judge Jeffrey Lawrence.

Although Lawrence ruled that Hipcheck16's identity must be revealed to Stone—and to a process server, should she decide to sue—he said it should remain confidential to others, according to the newspaper.


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