Thursday, May 31, 2007
The NY PI Blog continues to be the leader in blog coverage of the Flea-blogging-his-own-trial-and-then-settling-when-outed case. I've read very little of it, so I may be repeating something said elsewhere and better. But:
Is there anything particularly unique here? A witness -- here a party -- decided to settle when it became clear that things he had said elsewhere were known to the other side and that those things would affect the case.
Those things were on a blog in this instance, but is it really different than an expert taking a position in an earlier article contrary to that presented at trial? (Seen that.) Or a treating physician in a pharma tort case being impeached by his own records? (Seen that, too.) Or an investigating officer being crossed on past racist comments? (Wish I had avoided that on Court TV.)
I'd initially queried "Is there anything particularly interesting?" above instead of focusing on uniqueness. Clearly it is interesting; Flea (er, Dr. Lindeman) is a good and clever writer, and it's always interesting to read about people's first-hand interactions with the tort system. (Even if I would probably choose a different bass player if I were choosing a pseudonym, though I understand that "flea" has a particular meaning among pediatricians.)
But other than that, I'm not sure it's really a "Wow, look at this new world we're in!" moment. Instead, it may just be a moment to say that it's never a good idea to disclose privileged information to people outside the privilege, whether it's your neighbor or people who stumble across your blog.