There have been some volatile eruptions affecting the blogosphere of late, hence meriting a new post on the issue of blogging in our modern day and age. Last time round, we had the case of the forlorn NightJack blogger whose brave (and brazen, to be sure) recounting of events on the beat and—perhaps more revealingly—in the corridors of power merited him a career-halting ouster at the hands of the ethically-challenged Times of London. Yet today we do not have the luck of getting to eulogize such a nobly spirited e-crusader; on the contrary, today we get to see the blogosphere’s dirty underbelly…
Though last time round I was indignant at the loss of anonymity suffered by what most will agree was a writer with good intentions, this time I have no qualms with the matter. After all, when you create a blog titled “Skanks in NYC” and dedicate each of your triflingly few posts to making mud of one lady’s good name—well, it’s hard to maintain the “for the good of the public” argument. And when that lady happens to be somewhat of a public image, as is the case with semi-successful model Liskula Cohen, the blogger’s chances of slithering their way out of the matter are slim to none.
Cohen threatened with a defamation suit and convinced a Manhattan judge to issue a discovery subpoena, obliging Google to unmask the blogger. Lo and behold, it ended up being a resentful acquaintance that had had a previous, sour altercation with Cohen of one sort or another—thus offering a defining example of social pettiness. The begrudging potshooter is now promising to file suit against Google for failing to defend her right to privacy and anonymity online (errr?) in the face of a discovery subpoena issued by the Supreme Court of Manhattan…something tells me that’s going to be an uphill battle!
This episode was only challenged in recent blog affairs in terms of ludicrousness and sheer ineffability by the arrest of New Jersey blogger Hal Turner, the FBI agent provocateur-gone-wild pending trial for allegedly inciting violence against state legislators in Connecticut and federal judges in Illinois. Apparently, when you train a person in the “art” of disseminating aggravating and libelous statements (supposedly without “crossing the line”), it’s likely that said person will become hard to keep under control!
Aahhh, just another day in the fascinating universe of internetland. These cases are still too fresh (and nuts!) for me to form a solid opinion; future developments are likely to see me drop another line on the matter.