Tuesday, November 1, 2011
You may have heard of the Streisand effect which refers to the phenomenon that trying to suppress online information only calls more attention to it. Now the Rakofksy effect, as in Rakofsky versus The Internet, has entered the modern lexicon. More specifically, the Urban Dictionary.
1. Rakosky EffectInfinite pleading amendments as the unintended consequence of suing to censor your critics.
This term is in reference to Rakofsky v. The Internet, a defamation suit filed by Joseph Rakofsky against approximately 80 defendants, including The Washington Post Company, screen names, email addresses, and various esteemed lawyers who publicly on their websites condemned Joseph Rakofsky for bringing shame upon the practice of criminal defense and the legal profession. As the story caught fire across the blogosphere, plaintiff Rakofsky continually amended the suit, adding new defendants seemingly every time a new individual on the internet spoke critically of him, which only prompted wider criticism, thus creating a self-perpetuating cycle.