Another court declares that bloggers are indeed media

While my own case winds slowly through the judicial process, being opposed now by two recently appointed barristers, we can now see that other jurisdictions are catching up with developments in the media world.

In a court in Florida, in a similar case to my own, the court has found that a blogger and their blog can be and are considered to be media, and as a result can be considered a legitimate media property.

A few years ago, we¬†wrote about¬†the bizarre and quixotic effort by Florida businessman Christopher Comins to find any possible way to sue University of Florida student and blogger Matthew Frederick VanVoorhis for¬†his blog post¬†concerning a widely publicized event in which Comins¬†shot two dogs¬†in a field (video link). The story made lots of news at the time, but Comins didn’t go after any of the major media — instead targeting VanVoorhis for a defamation suit. The original blog post is “novelistic” but it’s difficult to see how it’s defamatory. Either way, Comins’ case was¬†shot down¬†on fairly specific procedural grounds: namely that Florida defamation law requires specific notice be given to media properties at least 5 days before a lawsuit is launched. Specifically, the law says:

Before any civil action is brought for publication or broadcast, in a newspaper, periodical, or other medium, of a libel or slander, the plaintiff shall, at least 5 days before instituting such action, serve notice in writing on the defendant, specifying the article or broadcast and the statements therein which he or she alleges to be false and defamatory.

Comins’ lawsuit was dumped because he failed to give such notice. Comins argues that he did give such a notice (though the letter he sent did not meet the requirements of such notice under the law) and (more importantly for this discussion) that VanVoorhis’ blog did not count as a media publication, and thus the law did not apply. The original court ruling rejected that pretty quickly, and now on appeal, a state appeals court has¬†not just rejected Comins’ anti-blog claim more thoroughly, but also highlighted¬†the importance of blogs to our media landscape. ¬† Read more »

Photo Of The Day




The Mobile Office

Read more »

The Special Ops wish list, laser rifles, pain rays and other cool stuff


Who wouldn’t want a laser rifle, or a “pain ray”…these are just some of the wish list for US special operations forces.

Laser rifles. Canine air conditioners. There are lots of gadgets that U.S. commandos would love to have, except for the fact that these items don’t even exist.

That’s why the U.S. Army Special Operations Command (USASOC), which includes the Army’s Special Forces and Rangers,¬†has published a long list¬†of equipment that it wants private industry to develop and build.

What is fascinating about this list isn’t just that it tells us what capabilities U.S. special operations forces want. It also tells us what capabilities they¬†don’t¬†have.

But just as important, it’s a forecast of the kind of warfare that American commandos anticipate they will be fighting. Special operations forces, along with drones, have now become America’s preferred method of waging war. If commandos get a new weapon or sensor, it probably will be used on a real mission or battlefield. And when the special operators get new technology, then it sometimes trickles down to the rest of the military, and from there to the civilian world.¬† Read more »

The gobby German needs to gag himself

Kim Dotcom took to twitter yesterday to goad and gloat over ripping off his former staff.

Meanwhile in the High Court he was under attack on two fronts, in one case by Crown lawyers over his gobbing off on Twitter about details of the case and the other by Wayne Tempero’s lawyer seeking to overturn the gagging order.

Kim Dotcom’s use of social media to discuss his long-running legal battle is interfering with court processes, a Crown lawyer says.

Dotcom’s legal team returned to court today in a bid to access government documents to help the internet mogul’s case.

This latest request for documents came a week after the Supreme Court refused Dotcom’s request to access evidence the US Government has against him in his extradition case.

Crown lawyers raised Dotcom’s prolific use of Twitter as an issue during today’s legal proceedings in the High Court in Auckland.

This included concerns over Dotcom posting details of a confidential email between lawyers to more than 350,000 Twitter followers.

Crown lawyer Kristy McDonald, QC, said Dotcom’s use of Twitter has “demonstrated considerable disregard” for court processes.

“Is this about obtaining documents so they can be put out in the public arena?”¬† Read more »

Photo Of The Day

The Associated Press: Jean-Marc Bouju / March 31, 2003.

The Associated Press: Jean-Marc Bouju / March 31, 2003

War Prisoner Holds Distraught Son


Read more »

Windpower sucks cash too

Windmills were abandoned in England over the late 1800s as the world progressed and developed better technologies, most windmills have been cleverly converted into the sort of homes you see on Grand Designs.

I wonder what they are going to do with all the obsolete bird slaughtering windmills when the taxpaying public finally put a halt to the massive subsidies the renewal industries receive.

Ironically the nasty stuff that is used to manufacture these noise polluting monstrosities are so toxic it means they will have to shipped for disassembly to a place with questionable labour standards.

Windflow Technology has posted a $2.8 million half-year loss.

This is almost 50 per cent higher than the previous half-year loss of $1.9m. ¬† Read more »

Radio Live interviews on blogging and bloggers

RadioLive’s Wallace Chapman was looking at bloggers,new media and the elections this year. He talked to a few bloggers.

This was my interview.

Read more »

Using Twitter to identify leadership aspirants

Matthew Beveridge has some interesting statistics regarding the use of Twitter by Shane Jones.

Matthew is doing some good analysis across the spectrum of social media use by politicians. I expect I will refer more to his posts during the course election year.

Shane joined Twitter on 31 July [2013], which is only 3 weeks before David Shearer resigned the Labour leadership, by which time there was already much discussion of his future in that position. In the first month, Shane sent around 66 Tweets or retweets. Which is around 1/4 of his total as at 1740 28 February. In late August through early September Shane was sending 4, 5, 6 or more Tweets a day. This dropped off in the days leading up to the actual vote, most likely due to time pressure as he was out meeting delegates. However the Tweets that were sent were the sort of Tweet destined to encourage engagement, containing images or quotes about where he saw Labour going under his leadership.

Shane stuck with being a reasonably active Tweeter up until the end of September, after that his rate of Tweeting dropped off. With days missed in late October, and then nearly 2 weeks without a Tweet from 20 October to 1 November. Tweeting remained rather sparse through November, with a few flurries, but a number of days with no Tweets. This sparse nature remained the norm for December.¬†¬† Read more »

Whaleoil is mobile again

The Team at Cre8d implemented the new theme for Whaleoil late on Friday.  You may have noticed some small visual changes for the main site, but the objective was to fix the mobile view for Whaleoil.

We pretty much didn’t have much to “fix” – we needed something that worked, at all!

So try it out on your phones, tablets, iPads and phablets – it’s going to zoom along.

This is last month’s breakdown of platforms


It will be interesting if those stats change significantly now that Whaleoil does a better job of delivering mobile content.

Now that the Mobile Theme project is off the list, the next thing we need to focus on is to get the merchandising store up and running!  We have a supplier Рnext to-do is to put up a little e-shop.  Will keep you informed.

Snoopy cow moans about loss of trust

What is it with people, usually women I might add, who go snooping through their partner’s email and phones and then express shock and outrage at what they find?

Hi there,

I’ve been with my husband for six years, married for three years.

Recently I found photos on his phone of women tattood half naked, bent over in g-strings. Then to top it off, the day after I found photos on his phone I was on the computer looking in the history and found he had been looking up
porn and websites for one night stands.

I’ve confronted him, he swears it didn’t¬†mean anything, but as for the computer stuff he has nothing to say.

Any advice … what do I do?


This is the question asked in Stuff’s Life & Style section. The response is equally stupid talking about porn addiction and trust and all sorts of mumbo-jumbo.

Dear Confused,

You must be experiencing a range of mixed feelings right about now!

I’m reading between the lines here, but¬†I wonder if you are struggling with feelings of unfaithfulness?

Pornography can be very addictive, but more problematic is the issue of trust and seeking one night stands.

You have to decide where your boundaries are and what you expect from your partner. What is he willing to do to address the issue? When these kinds of behaviours enter into your relationship and are not addressed it opens the door to all kinds or problems rising up.

Some couples enjoy pornography and see it as a healthy part¬†of their relationship, but this has to be mutual. If it’s not and it sounds like it is not from your email, then you need to¬†talk this through and develop some agreements that will begin to repair that damage and restore¬†trust, and be prepared that this may take some time and it won’t happen overnight.

All the best with your road ahead,

A better response would have been to tell off the snoopy cow for going looking…I mean what was she expecting to find…she went snooping. If anyone has trust issues it is now the snoopy cow’s partner who knows the missus likes trawling through his emails when he isn’t looking.

She has made enormous assumptions, jumped to conclusions and probably read things out of context…and on top of that went skulking around behind his back and she is now crying a river of tears at what she has found.

Why was she looking in the first place? There is a hint right there.

Stupid people do stupid things and there is nothing good that comes from looking at someone’s emails and phone messages…without their permission.

I bet I could take Lesley’s emails and texts even and turn them into something they aren’t.

Snoopy cows deserve everything they find.