September 08, 2003
A tort reform plan I can support

RealityChecker suggests a way to help curb the scourge of frivolous lawsuits filed by corporate law firms: Public embarrassment of the firms responsible, much like Bill "Roll 'em!" Bennett's suggestion of same for unwed mothers. You can help by linking Hogan & Hartson LLP, the firm that filed Fox News' frivolous lawsuit against Al Franken at Bill O'Reilly's insistence, to RC's post. Do feel free to join me on this.

(The name of this tactic, by the way, since neither Kevin, from whom I got the original link, nor RC mention it, is Google bombing.)

UPDATE: I've removed links to RC's post that used the individual attorneys' names. I don't know enough about how big law firms work to feel confident about whether they had any choice in this matter or not. So, I'll cut them a little slack.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on September 08, 2003 to Legal matters | TrackBack

Hey, Kuff — Kate Bolger's a friend of mine! Just because some partner put her on a bum case doesn't mean she should fork over just like management! Ease up!

That said, it was a pretty stupid case. =, I just don't want to Rule 11 individual attorneys, except maybe for the lead attorney.

Posted by: Greg Greene on September 8, 2003 8:45 AM

Fiar enough. I've removed the individually-named links.

Posted by: Charles Kuffner on September 8, 2003 9:09 AM

The lead lawyer is accountable — she became so when she signed and filed the original complaint — and this case was uncommonly silly at best, and borderline litigation abuse.

Notwithstanding my own Fox-friendly conservative views and my utter absence of appreciation for Al Franken (15 Harvard research assistants! sheesh!), I've written critical blog posts about this case, mentioning said lead lawyer by name, several times — "Free, fair, and balanced legal advice to Fox," "Toldja so, Fox," and "Beldar's free, fair & balanced legal advice to Fox is vindicated!"

I noticed the number of search engine hits I was getting that had her name as the search term, and joked that perhaps if I wanted to drive up my traffic, I could use her name along with "NAKED" in my metalinks. More seriously, though, her personal reputation and that of her firm should indeed suffer whatever tarnish is associated with this case, as it would have enjoyed whatever glory it might have reaped if the facts and law weren't so foursquare against them and their client.

I don't think Google-bombing is a good thing though, for a variety of reasons.

Posted by: Beldar on September 8, 2003 3:30 PM

Oops, sorry. Merely 14 research assistants. Team Franken, indeed.

Posted by: Beldar on September 8, 2003 3:31 PM