Expertise's Politics and Sports Blog

Friday, March 25, 2005
Keep your eye on these cases.

There's a number of court cases going on in the US and abroad that are very interesting and quite worrisome.

First, a couple from Captain's Quarters.

- There is a vote buying scandal being busted up in St. Louis from last year's elections.  Three members of the St. Clair County Democratic Committee along with a precinct worker plead guilty in federal court, with three more committee members and another precinct worker being charged Wednesday:

An undetermined number of voters were paid $5 or $10 to cast a Democratic ballot in the Nov. 2 election, court records said. The money allegedly came from the St. Clair County Democratic Committee, though there was no indication the county committee knew how the funds would be used.

Although it's being quiet as kept, Democrats are being busted all over the country for their schananigans during Campaign 04.  And it looks as if there are more indictments to come.

- Great Britain's High Court has claimed the whole internet lies within their jurisdiction, as foreigners in other countries can now be sued by British citizens even if the content was published in the United States.

The case they ruled on happened to have California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as the defendant:

Miss Richardson alleges she was libelled by Schwarzenegger and two campaign workers in an October 2003 article in The Los Angeles Times, which also appeared on the internet.

She says it meant she "deliberately and dishonestly fabricated" the allegations that Arnie touched her breast when she interviewed him at London's Dorchester Hotel in December 2000.

The judge today said that 57-year-old Schwarzenegger was "not peripheral" to the case.

Now please note:  The Los Angeles Times does not have an office in Great Britain, nor publishes or distributes papers there.  However, the High Court makes the ridiculous argument that since British citizens have access to the LA Times website, they have jurisdiction.  As they would say, that's rubbish.

Not only could this High Court ruling be used to attack U.S. bloggers and grant absentee judgements for those that could never cross the ocean to appear in court, but it could expose bloggers to criminal charges due to GB's much weaker speech liberties.  A very serious prescedent has been created here.

- In The Agora discusses France's press agency Agence France-Presse (AFP) is suing Google for $17.5 million claiming copyright infringment through use of Google's news search engine.

If they win this case, this would send shockwaves throughout the internet.  Other news wires would be able to do the same thing and essentially kill off every website that links information without the news wire's permission.  What's troubling about this case is that Google isn't directly linking to articles directly from the AFP website, they are linking to articles from newspaper websites that use AFP articles.  So  the decision that comes from the federal district should be interesting.

Stay tuned folks.

Posted at 03:53 am by Expertise

March 26, 2005   09:18 AM PST
Hmmm!!! Just like China and Cuba and their rules on free speech...
March 25, 2005   01:26 PM PST
*bows* thank you sir.
March 25, 2005   01:14 PM PST
The Preview Script updated. It should wotk now with blockquotes and divs.

Let me know if there are anymore problems. Btw, thanks for letting me know. :D


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