Lawsuit Filed Against Techdirt Over Article Talking About Lawyers 90 Day Suspension

Techdirt has been hit with a defamation lawsuit by Larry Klayman. The article discusses his 90 day suspension.

Techdirt has had its share of challenges in recent years. In 2019, TeeSpring suspended their relationship with Techdirt over vague accusations of copyright infringement. In response, Techdirt moved over to Threadless instead so they could continue selling apparel. Last year, the site wound up pulling Adsense ads after Google threatened to demonetize them.

Now, the opinion site has been slapped with a defamation lawsuit. The article that is seemingly the subject of the lawsuit discussed the suspension of Larry Klayman and events that led to Klayman’s suspension.

Apparently, this didn’t sit well with Klayman who reportedly sued Techdirt for defamation. While we don’t have access to the lawsuit filing itself, Techdirt did post their legal response to have the case dismissed. From Techdirt:

Techdirt was recently sued in Florida by Larry Klayman for an article that we published concerning the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit suspending his license for 90 days. We strongly believe that this case is entirely without merit, and is a clear attempt to silence opinion and criticism via the court system.

Last week, we asked the court to dismiss the lawsuit under Florida’s anti-SLAPP law, and we hope that the court will agree. Beyond that, while litigation is still ongoing, we’ll have no further comment, other than to note our continued advocacy for the adoption of more state anti-SLAPP laws and a strong federal anti-SLAPP law.

The article also embeds their motion to dismiss.

This is definitely not the first time the site was the target of a lawsuit. In 2017, Techdirt was hit with another lawsuit for questioning if a particular person invented e-mail. So, if Techdirt can survive that one, they’ll probably survive this lawsuit as well.

Techdirt has a long history of calling those they disagree with idiots. There really isn’t much of a filter on their own opinions on certain topics or people. At the same time, they do back up their comments with evidence and knowledge as well. It isn’t necessarily a surprise that someone, sooner or later, does attempt to file a lawsuit against them – especially given the sites prominence. At the same time, the article that is the subject of this lawsuit is actually quite benign by comparison to some of their other articles. Still, that article was apparently edited in response to Klayman. So, things do quickly go into the weeds a bit there.

Still, this does add to the list of challenges facing the site in the last few years. From our point of view, they’ll probably survive this one given the resources afforded to them. The good news for the site is the fact that Florida has an anti-SLAPP law in place. The filing itself does reference this law multiple times. So, it’ll be interesting if the case can get dismissed.

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Facebook.

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