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Deposition of a Web Site Host

2010 – New Jersey Court Signed a Discovery Order Permitting the Deposition of a Web Site Host

In a recent case handled by partner, Dennis S. Deutsch, a New Jersey Court Signed a Discovery Order Permitting the Deposition of a Web Site Host in Order to Determine Anonymous Authors of Allegedly Defamatory Postings.

The NJ Superior Court, Hudson County, Law Division, issued a recent decision, in a long line of cases dealing with issues of anonymity on the Web and free speech protection. In the case of Slava Lerner v. John and Jane Does the court held that Plaintiff satisfied the requirements of Dendrite v. Doe, 342 N.J. Super (App. Div. 2001).

When Slava Lerner discovered that an unofficial web site of a condominium in which he resided posted anonymous statement alleging, among other things, that he had engaged in improper and criminal activity, he became irate and sought our assistance. The problem was that it was unknown who to sue for defamation since the identity of the posters.

Dennis Deutsch, our litigation director brought suit to commence the process to identify the posters of the statements. The litigation is ongoing and in the discovery process. (June 2010)

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