Last night's episode of See You in Court had Tristan Rogers defending a post made on the SE1 forum concerning a management company. Great insight into the workings of the legal system and a glimpse into the Bankside Press offices of James Hatts.
Won't spoil the outcome for anyone who hasn't watched this series but the impression one is left with is even if you eventually win, or have your case settled out of court, you will most likely be out of pocket, and have spent months if not years reaching a conclusion. And the result of last nights episode was a compromise as the rights and wrongs were never challenged in court.
Very impressed with Mr Rogers though for not buckling under the possible financial implications.
It highlights the difficulties in hosting and monitoring a forum where the owner could be held liable for any potential defamatory comments made by a poster. Sometimes even though a comment may be true, defending it may be too expensive and time consuming.
Watched yesterday's show with interest.
Sadly, because it started later than planned, the reveal isn't on my dvd.
It stops straight after Simon Singh explains that, though he won, he'll only get 70% of his costs back.
So, what's the verdict in Tristan Rogers' case?
And are forum members free to post their opinion?
(I'm surprised the company didn't go for a superinjunction, that seems to be all the rage!)
No iPlayer in the Netherlands, so if you could find a way to explain without giving too much away to others, I'd be much obliged.
There was no verdict. An out of court agreement was reached in which Tristan doesn't mention the management company or repeat the allegations, and the company pay his legal costs.
So Tristan wins the moral argument, but still loses a great deal of time and energy, and has probably had one of the most stressful years of his life.
James Hatts doesn't particularly want the company mentioned on this thread, which is fair enough. If he doesn't object, here is a link to the thread and one of the subsequent posts discussed in the programme:
I actually managed to google the company, nice lot that they are!
Unfortunately, this outcome is not going to stop them to behave in this manner in the future. Maybe they'll even feel strengthened, for forum members are indeed no longer free to voice their opinion.
'Het recht van de sterkste', we say, 'The law of the jungle.'
Of course I'm very happy for Tristan,
and I admire his determination.