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Sue Scheff: Teens caring: Take the pledge not to cyberbully

CatiStompOutDayAs part of Teens that Inspire, Cati Grant continues to bring awareness to bullying and cyberbullying. She is helping other teens learn more about cyber safety and the effects of bullying.

During this month of National Cyber Safety Awareness, it is a perfect time to get to know Cati Grant and what inspires her.

At only 16 years old, Cati is already making a difference in many lives and was recently named Teen Ambassador for Love Our Children USA. Read more about this amazing young teen.
Q. Tell us about Cati Cares? When did you create it and why?

A. I created Cati Cares in June of 2008 as a birthday gift from my parents. I created it because I wanted to help other people, prevent cyber-bullying, and promote Internet safety to anyone with access to the Internet. I really wanted to start a movement of caring among teens.

Q. What tips do you have for kids that are being cyber bullied online?

A. Try not to encourage the bully and just try to ignore it…. do not respond, keep records of all contact and talk with a trusted adult. I cannot stress enough for anyone who is being bullied to speak with a trusted adult. There is so much more awareness about this issue than when I went through it several years ago, there are a lot more resources available for everyone to use. Don’t suffer in silence!

Q. Who inspires you and what motivates you?

A. I find inspiration from simple everyday things and I am constantly motivated by people who encourage me to keep up the work of Cati Cares.
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Q. What are your long term goals for Cati Cares?

A. To keep the website up for anyone who might need guidance or help to deal with a bully. I have the domain registered for the next 10 years. I am excited that Cati Cares has given me the opportunity to meet so many wonderful new people. I plan to always be a community advocate.

Q. How do your family, friends and teachers feel about your crusade?

A. They all feel that I am doing a great job and that I am making a difference in the world today.

Q. Do you have other hobbies or activities you enjoy?

A. Yes, I love horses, science and cheerleading. I love walking my dog, Bella. I also enjoy reading and writing.

Q. What do you want to be when you grow up?

A. I want to be a veterinarian specifically for race horses. I love all animals and have been riding horses since I was 5 years old.

Q. I understand you are part of Love our Children USA, it is such an honor. Please tell us about it?

A. It is a great honor to be named the Teen Ambassador by Ross Ellis, she is such a wonderful person. I am excited for the future and happy to have another venue to raise awareness. If we all join together, we can eradicate bullying forever.

Q. You were also invited to participate in Kids Are Heroes Day 2009, another honor. Please tell us more about this special day?

A. Another amazing honor, I am so excited to attend Kids Are Heroes Day in Frederick, Maryland October 24, 2009. I hope to motivate other teens and kids to volunteer in their communities. I am also looking forward to meeting other Heroes. Everyone is invited to come out and meet us. It should be a pretty amazing weekend!

Q. Is there anything more you would like to share with us?

A. I would like to encourage anyone who is being bullied to speak with a trusted adult, they will listen. Middle school and High school will be the toughest years of your life! Be yourself and don’t let anyone else try to make you feel bad for that! I would also like to encourage anyone who is a witness to someone being bullied, speak up! You just might save someone’s life and become a hero. I have some advice for bullies; ask yourself why you are doing what you are doing? Stop before you are branded a bully for life.

CatiCaresYou can follow Cati Grant on Twitter and visit her website at www.CatiCares.com.

Join the movement of TEENS caring.  Take the PLEDGE not to cyberbully.” – Cati Grant

 

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Sue Scheff: Don’t Let the Web Kill what You Love

“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it.”

Warren Buffett said that, before the invention of the Internet. Now, in the information age, the statement has never been more truthful. That is why I started a business, ReputationDefender, that is all about protecting reputations.

Your good name, and the reputations of your family, business, and everything you love, is valuable.  So, when your neighbor, a customer, or a love interest plugs your name into a search engine, what will they find?

Anyone can come along and slam you online and if that happens, search results for your name might be dominated by negative, incomplete, or even false information.  A hostile online comment might represent the uncommon experience of a dissatisfied customer or disgruntled neighbor, but due to the structure of search engines, that single opinion can be greatly amplified and made to look like a universal point of view. You might fall victim to the sniping of an anonymous blogger or even a competitor posing as an angry customer.

It’s not only easy to publish half-truths, innuendo, and falsehoods on the Internet, it’s also easy to make them stick.  Many people who publish negative web content know how to make it maximally destructive.  Lies, rumors, or memes take flight easily, getting repeated, added to, and generally magnified. Even though some of these narratives are discovered to be false, very few of them get debunked as loudly as they are broadcasted in the first place. As a result, false content often becomes more visible on the web than, say, well-researched articles from reputable news sources.  It might seem illogical that bogus speculation can end up dominating searches for you, but that’s how a rumor mill works.

A great strength of the Internet is that it gives everyone a voice.  That’s also one of its dangers: it can endow fraudsters and idle speculators with the appearance of authority. 

The danger is real. This does not mean you should stop using the Internet.  It means that you must proactively establish your accurate and positive presence on the web before there is a problem.  You need to maximize your control over what people find about you, before someone else does it for you.

There are options. Companies have developed software solutions for online reputation protection.  ReputationDefender, which is now a partner with TheStreet.com network, is my company, and we do just that.

Michael Fertik is the Founder and CEO of ReputationDefender, the online reputation management and privacy company.

Dozier Internet Law: $11.3 Million Sue Scheff Defamation Judgment Confirmed on Appeal

Dozier Internet Law is constantly battling the scofflaws of the web. On the one hand, the Internet as a whole opens up the world to everyone. On the other hand, it opens up the world to, well…to everyone. Defamation laws and related judicial interpretations evolved historically at a time, and in an environment, in which there were inherent protections that served as a filter of sorts. Today those protections are lost to the ability to distribute attacks to millions overnight. Want to physically picket a business? You have to invest time and disclose your identity if you are going to coordinate and show up at a business. Want to print and distribute flyers, or take out an advertisement or run a commercial? Expensive, of course. And newspapers and television wouldn’t print, even as ads or commercials, alot of the outrageous claims and statements being readily distributed online.

Once in a while, Dozier Internet Law sees comments encouraging such illegality from what might seem to be credible sources. But the application and interpretation of laws dealing with disparagement and defamation and other lawlessness will eventually catch up with the online scofflaws, and defending misconduct by claiming you saw a blog by a lawyer saying it was legal is not a defense. 

On October 15, 2008 the District Court of Appeal of the State of Florida just rejected an appeal from the Defendant and confirmed a JURY judgment on behalf of Susan Scheff in the sum of $11.3 Million, of which $5 Million was for punitive damages (on behalf of Susan Scheff and her very small business), against an individual who took it upon herself to publish allegedly defamatory statements online. Read the plaintiff’s comments by Sue Scheff about “free speech”.

Online defamation and product disparagement is a huge issue, of course, and businesses are under attack. This judgment is just another example of the legal system catching up with online misconduct. And instead of a real attempt to establish standards and self police and self regulate, one blogger organization has started selling insurance to bloggers. It strikes me that insurance coverage is a wonderful thing for the businesses under attack. At Dozier Internet Law we hear from dozens of victims of online blog attacks each week, it seems. The possibility of insurance coverage is great. Online defamation promises to be a growth industry for trial lawyers. Another example, I surmise, of an unanticipated and unintended consequence…but this time of mammoth proportions. 

Sue Scheff: Top Ten Blogger Personas: The Mobosphere Unveiled by John Dozier, Esq.

This has been one of my favorite Blogs and Articles describing a variety of personalities of people that simply have nothing better to do than harm others with their evil keystrokes.

Top Ten Blogger Personas: The Mobosphere Unveiled by John Dozier, Esq.

Ever since Congress passed Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act giving immunity to interactive service providers for publishing the defamation of others, a wide range of characters has arisen and infiltrated the mainstream blogosphere. Instead of becoming a source for obtaining reliable information, the blogosphere, and user generated content, is at risk of becoming a less credible information source. Dozier Internet Law defamation lawyers are constantly battling these “black hat” forces and over the past several years we have acquired quite an insight into this underworld; an anonymous and covert society bent on terrorizing businesses. These are our internal thoughts on the matter, and not scientific analyses. We are not psychiatrists; just defamation lawyers and trial lawyers trained for almost fifty years to figure out the human nature of clients, witnesses, and juries.

All too often blog attacks are simply protection rackets and extortion schemes in disguise. We have been working on documenting the organizational structure and operational methodologies used by these racketeers. For now, let’s take a look at the entire panoply of characters we seem, as business defamation lawyers, to run into. For those businesses under attack, it is essential that you first identify the publisher’s persona and motivation before beginning to identify the proper strategies for addressing his often seemingly legitimate posts. We don’t go into details on how we work with clients to deal with each type of personality, but the tools vary considerably from being passive, to utilizing SEO services, to implementing reputation management initiatives, to pre-litigation and lawsuit actions.

Defamation Lawyers Pursue Bloggers

Pickpocket

This is the guy who used to wait on street corners for elderly ladies to pass. He enjoys attacking defenseless people and stealing covertly using deception. This type of blogger will steal your copyright protected content, have the search engines push your prospective clients to his site, and then run ads and otherwise direct the traffic to your competitors. He could be an affiliate marketer for a competitor getting a share of the revenue, or he could simply be running Google or Yahoo ads on his site. Pickpockets also take great pleasure in stealing your trademarks…surreptitiously using your mark in hidden tags, meta tags, hidden redirect pages, or through a myriad of search engine optimization techniques, all in the hopes of re-directing your prospects to a competitor and taking money from you.

Wacko

We usually identify a wacko situation quickly. There are distinctive characteristics of his communications. The wacko is usually a “follower”, someone looking to gain attention and recognition, but escalates what may have started as fair criticism into more and more outrageous claims. Most sophisticated business people immediately view the poster as a “nut case”, particularly when an excessive amount of time or energy disproportionate to the merits of the subject is expended. But it is not easy for the typical browser on the web to see the pattern, usually spread over multiple web properties.

Druggie

Or, maybe “liquid courage” would be more appropriate. This guy is exactly what comes to mind. During the day this blogger is a normal guy, but at night he returns to the sanctity of his home, gets drunk or high, and goes out on the web looking for “hook-ups” and blogging on his “hang-ups”. This guy is hard to detect as a fraudster, and sometimes won’t recall what he said online the next day while under the influence. He posts aggressive, false and arbitrary attacks on whatever issue of the day (or night) catches his fancy.

Alien

No, not from another world. But from overseas. In a far, far away place, without any treaty with the US, in a country without an effective legal system and no notion of business or personal property ownership rights. Many of these types operate out of certain Russian provinces, but the blogs, postings and communications appear to be from the customer down the street. This individual usually has an ulterior motive, often working with the criminal discussed below. He has no fear, until he takes a vacation to Turkey and US federal agents grab him for extradition, which is exactly what happened on a case in the not so recent past.

Nerd

This is the guy who is scared to talk with a girl, but behind the keyboard, all alone, morphs into a Casanova. This empowerment of anonymity creates an omnipotent persona, and for the first time the nerd feels the effect of power and control, gets an adrenaline buzz when he exercises it, and he exercises it often, usually creating or perpetuating a volatile situation in which he feels he can outsmart the “opposition”. There is no principle involved. His blog postings are all about the adrenaline. It is hard to know if you are dealing with this type online…his posts are intelligent and on their face credible. But, once you identify the nerd blogger, he cowers and goes away, usually forever.

Rookie
Enjoy debating a thirteen year old? They are out on the net acting like adults, posting statements and play-acting like a grown-up. The challenge, of course, is that most people reading the posts have no idea these are coming from a kid. The tip off can be the utter immaturity of the posts, but most often the kids can sound credible criticizing, for instance, a CPA’s method of calculating RIO on REIT holdings, because they can mimic earlier posts. There is no insidious motive here; just kids having fun as the hormones kick in. But the readers of the blog posting don’t know that.

Sadist

This person attacks others, causes pain, and revels in the results in ways not worthy of mention. He loves to create, direct, control, and unleash a firestorm of criticism about a company just to create pain and damage. This type of person may often by the prime instigator of the online attacks, and tightens the noose by escalating the attack rapidly, almost as if in an obsessive state. You will find a sadist going to many sites and blogging, and he usually lets you know it was him because he uses his real moniker. He has characteristics of a stalker, and he is most likely to be the one that starts recommending direct physical violence against the executives of a company. This person is not motivated by money, but by the pure enjoyment of pain being visited upon innocent parties.

Bankrupt

No, not morally bankrupt. Actually bankrupt…no money, no assets, no prospects for work, and nothing to lose. These bloggers post without fear of the consequences or any regard for the truth because you “can’t get blood out of a turnip”, you “can’t get water from a rock”, and all these other sayings handed down, we surmise, through his generations. This is usually not a smart guy, but his postings are damaging and inflammatory. Many will own and control blogs without any concern about the consequences of liabilities that might arise through the perpetuation and “enhancement” of posts, and sometimes will post to their own blog and act like it was from a third party.

Criminal

Career criminals, no less. Like the convicted felon running a sophisticated extortion scheme against a very prominent business. Or the owner of an open blog avoiding service of process with guard dogs protecting his compound. The thieves and crooks of the world are online today; and the criminals often have both an organization and a highly effective and surprisingly coordinated operational plan in place to target a business. Rumors of $500,000 a year payoffs seem to promote this problem, which emanates from more of a “mobosphere” than the blogosphere.

Mis-Leader

This person is in no manner a leader. This blogger has a hidden agenda, but he just makes it sound like he is a totally objective commentator. He can create an appearance of authority and the casual visitor to his blog does not question the legitimacy. This type of persona is hard to figure out. One of the most pervasive practices is to control a blog and allow negative posts against all except his generous advertisers. Another common technique involves omission; not disclosing conflicts of interest or the existence of a business or personal relationship because the readers of the blog would totally discount the commentator’s posts as unreliable and biased.

Dozier Internet Law Defamation Lawyers

In closing, most of the blogosphere is legitimate, offers honest opinions and comments that add value to an open dialogue, and is an excellent example of the exercise of constitutionally protected free speech. As business defamation lawyers, we seen another side. The “mobosphere”, on the other hand, operates outside of the spotlight and often uses reckless, irresponsible, false and defamatory statements for personal or professional gain, all too often focused on self gratification and pecuniary benefits. As businesses attempt to leverage user generated content (“UGC”) into a valuable tool in the Web 2.0 environment, the proliferation of the scofflaws interrupting the free flow of credible speech in the online world puts at risk the reputation and integrity of UGC and raises the very real risk that consumers will begin viewing web content with disdain and suspicion.

Dozier Internet Law defamation lawyers offer a free consultation to qualified businesses and professionals undergoing attacks from the scofflaws of the web.

Sue Scheff: Internet Gossip by Connect with Kids

“Sure enough, I had a parent come to my door and say, ‘Your daughter has been saying some rather nasty things about my daughter on this website.’”

– Patti Thrift, Mother

High school students have always spread gossip in the halls, on the walls and on the phone.  Now, it’s on the Internet, too.  On various message boards specific to communities around the country, kids write about whom they hate, whom they think is pregnant or has an STD and record other often hurtful rumors that may or may not be true.

Sixteen-year-old Jessica remembers once when some kids at her school wrote cruel things about her on the Web.

“They were just making fun of me,” she says.  “You know, she’s really ugly, she’s this, she’s that, ba-ba-ba.”

Jessica’s 11-year-old sister, Emma, admits she’s used the Web to write nasty things about another girl, though she regrets it now. 

“After a while, you’re like, how could I have been so mean?  Like, why did I do that?” she says. 

The other girl’s father eventually became so frustrated with what Emma had said that he came to her door and demanded her mother make her stop.

Experts say gossip on the Internet can be more harmful than the old-fashioned kind.  It’s often anonymous because kids use fake screen names.  It has the power of the written word, so it lasts longer and is taken more seriously.  And, unlikely ugly words on the bathroom wall, there’s no way to scratch it out. 

“Online gossip is to hearsay gossip probably what nukes are to dynamite,” says Dr. Ramah Commanday, a school psychologist.  “It can get EXTREMELY raunchy.”

If your kids are victims of online gossip, Dr. Commanday suggests putting the gossip into perspective.

“Point out to them how what’s being said on the screen differs from what everyone knows about you as a person,” Dr. Commanday says.

You can also try what worked for Emma:  Keep your kids off the offensive website! 

“When she was using it all the time, her name was on there all the time.  People were writing things about her,” explains Patti Thrift, Emma’s mother.  “Since she has no longer had access to that, she’s no longer a topic of conversation.”

Experts say that any time your child is on the Internet, you should know what he or she is doing there.  Online gossip is just another reason why.

Tips for Parents

Most of us remember passing notes during class or swapping stories over lunch with our friends in middle and high school.  But with more teens accessing the Internet these days, it appears that gossip has gone high-tech.  Teens are using message boards, instant messaging and even email to air out their frustrations – often in hurtful language – about their teachers and peers.

According to an Internet Report from the UCLA Center for Communication Policy, 97% of kids aged 12 to 18 access the Internet on a regular basis.  What they’re doing on the Internet, however, may be surprising.  The U.S. Department of Justice reports that approximately one in every 17 kids is threatened or harassed while using the Internet.  In fact, most don’t tell their parents or other adults, and if they do, the adults often don’t know how to stop the online teasing.

Gossiping, whether it’s in the halls or on a message board, more often than not leads to hurt feelings.  According to the Nemours Foundation, if teens spend enough time gossiping and passing on stories they don’t know are true, eventually no one will believe anything they say, even when it is the truth.  Teens who gossip shouldn’t expect to be trusted ever again.  Once friends learn that a peer can’t resist spreading secrets around, they won’t tell him or her anything personal.  And if a teen gossips about personal or important issues, he or she could even end up in trouble at school and at home.  Teachers don’t appreciate students who make it tough for other students to learn, and parents won’t be happy to hear that their child is causing trouble in school.

If you’ve heard your teen taking teasing and gossiping to a hurtful level, it’s time to remedy the situation.  The experts at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota offer the following advice for curbing your teen’s gossiping and teasing:

  • Cultivate your teen’s compassion.  Talk to him or her about feelings – how emotional blows can hurt as much as physical ones.  “You wouldn’t throw a rock at that boy, would you?  So you shouldn’t call him a ‘zit-face’ either.”
  • Give your teen a simple test he or she can use to judge if his or her teasing is playful or hurtful:  “How would I feel if someone said this about me?”
  • Talk to your teen about the when and where of playful teasing.  He or she shouldn’t always resort to sarcasm or jokes at someone else’s expense in order to get a laugh.
  • Examine your own behavior and that of other family members.  Do you rib your children at length, even after they plead with you to stop?  Do you tease inappropriately, that is, about the way people look or the habits they have?  Are you confusing razzing with teaching and discipline – for instance, do you communicate your frustration about your teen’s messy room by calling him “Mr. Slob”?  Make sure that your own teasing (and that of everyone else in your household) is good-natured, not aggressive or manipulative.

As a parent, it is also important to regulate how your teen uses the Internet.  If you know what your teen is doing while online, you can better prevent him or her from visiting message boards where the temptation to gossip exists.  The Media Awareness Network suggests considering the following questions concerning how your teen surfs the Net:

Are you involved in your teen’s online activities?  Do you know what he or she is doing and whom your teen is talking to when he or she is on the Internet?
Does your family have a set of rules or an agreement for appropriate Internet use?
Do you make Internet use a family activity by guiding your teen to good sites and teaching him or her how to do safe, effective searches?
Have you taught your teen not to believe everything he or she reads online and to check online information with an adult or with another source?
If your teen has her or his own website, have you checked to make sure it doesn’t contain harmful or hurtful information?
Have you talked to your teen about responsible online behavior?  Does he or she understand that making threats or harassing others online can be considered illegal activities?

References

  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota
  • Media Awareness Network
  • Nemours Foundation
  • UCLA Center for Communication Policy
  • U.S. Department of Justice

Sue Scheff: Proving Free Speech will not condone online defamation

My case and the unprecedented jury verdict for damages of over $11M has gained national and international attention. There are more and more people now fighting back against Cyberbullying and Internet Harassment. Take a moment to find out more about Internet Defamation and Invasion of Privacy.

Read More about how The Web is Not Anonymous by Dozier Internet Law:

Dozier Internet Law: The Web is Not Anonymous

Dozier Internet Law chases a lot of scofflaws. Sometimes the subject matter is copyright infringement, sometimes trademark infringement, often hacking and defamation. A reporter interviewing me last week was surprised to learn that individuals posting information online were not entitled to absolute anonymity and was surprised that you could subpoena information to identify the source of the publication of defamatory information in the airline industry. That got me to thinking a little about the knowledge base of most netizens.

Yes, you can be identified. For every instance in which Public Citizen wins a case preventing the disclosure of the identity, I suspect they turn down dozens of cases they know they can’t win. There is no absolute right to privacy or anonymity online. Identities are disclosed everyday in litigation through a process called “discovery”. And most people leave pretty good tracks. If the plaintiff is obviously going to lose the case, the courts won’t let the plaintiff use discovery to identify a defendant. But if the case is arguably valid, there is no problem with issuing extensive and far ranging discovery to locate and identify a defendant. And it is a process used often by lawyers, but an issue not publicized by the extreme left wingers very often. That way, each “victory” they claim sounds significant. But most, frankly, are irrelevant or at least not significant. At Dozier Internet Law we go after these anonymous types often, and with great success. Rarely does Public Citizen get involved. When they do, their involvement is an anomaly. We don’t publicize all of the cases in which we are identifying, through discovery, anonymous scofflaws, but from the volume of press release type emails and blog entries flowing from Public Citizen, I can understand this reporter’s misunderstanding.

Dozier Internet Law: MySpace Hacking Indictment Well Supported

The federal prosecutors in California obviously did their legal research before asking the grand jury to indict under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act in the myspace.com suicide case. I don’t like the statute’s seemingly over-broad reach. I’ve criticized the statute in the past for the very same reasons some of the free speech liberal commentators object all over the airwaves today. The difference, however, is that I don’t pretend to make the law mean what I would like for it to mean. It is what it is. And, as it is written, the prosecutors believe they are right, I think they are right, and the 9th Circuit does too!   

Wonder if the prosecutors read my blog entry from last June about Dozier Internet Law and our view on the law of hacking? And I wonder how many of these law professors and talking heads on TV have ever tried a hacking or unauthorized access case? Maybe the prosecutors are new to this, maybe they aren’t. But at least they did their legal research. Commentators, particularly the “free speechers” expressing outrage over the indictment, should be so diligent. There’s at least one law professor so outraged he is offering his legal services for free. A little research, Mr. Professor, may be in order. Here’s why:

California is in the 9th Circuit. I suggest anyone interested in commenting on the case who also wants to sound somewhat knowledgeable read the Middleton v. US case decided by the 9th Circuit. I suspect the prosecutors will use this case to argue that unauthorized access causing damage or loss has already been recognized as a crime in the 9th Circuit. Lay on top of that decision another 9th Circuit case, Creative Computing v. Getloaded.com, which Dozier Internet Law argued before the 9th Circuit, and you can see that the rationale the prosecutors are using has already been established in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in a couple of decisions. The trial court HAS TO follow this case law from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals! Anywhere else in the country and they would not have a trial court bound by this precedent. Smart prosecutors, I would say. 

Visit the Dozier Internet Law Hacking page on our site and you can see that our interpretation has always been that such access in violation of a user agreement or terms of use violates not only the CFAA but also many, many state computer crime laws. For those who think that the CFAA applies only to damage to a computer, read the code sections again. And for those who believe that a damage or loss could not include personal injury or death, view the expansive definition of “loss”. How could this statute evolve since its passage in the late 1990s to be so inclusive today? 9/11 and the Patriot Act, frankly. You can research the changes that were made to the law, review the legislative history, and read the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act from top to bottom. You may even want to re-read the Dozier Internet Law Hacker Blog Entry from last June in which I made the same points the prosecutor will likely be relying upon, and described a criminal hacking trial for which I was lead counsel in which the Judge also found that violating a terms of use is unauthorized access (won on other grounds).

No, this is not an unprecedented case. The FBI and Department of Justice recently raided our client’s offices in Florida based on an alleged website user agreement violation. Another FBI investigation targeted a client for doing the same thing in Northern California. The concepts may seem novel or unique to those feigning expertise in this area of the law. But, the indictment is likely well grounded in law, and I am not surprised at all that the prosecutors brought charges under the CFAA. Particularly in California and the 9th Circuit.

The lesson, of course, is that those contracts you agree to online are binding, and those abusing a website and joining the world of online scofflaws had better watch out. I still don’t like the statutes that associate hackers with non-malicious unauthorized access. But, no matter how hard the left wing, free speech commentators try, they can’t change the law. They see it as they want it to be. We see it as it is. And it is what it is! Ask the 9th Circuit.