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Company files defamation lawsuit against anonymous Web poster August 23, 2008

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Ann Arbor News, 21 August 2008

After executives at an Ann Arbor venture capital firm discovered an anonymous, negative Internet posting about the company, they weren’t just mad: They decided to sue.

In a court filing, EDF Ventures accused “John Doe” of defamation for implying in a comment posted on the Web that the people running the firm were dishonest. The comment was made on a California-based Web site called The Funded, which was created to allow entrepreneurs to rate investors anonymously. (more)

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Jeremie Dalin: Teen convicted after threat August 22, 2008

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Lincolnshire Review, 21 August 2008

A teen convicted of falsely making a terrorist threat against Stevenson High School will serve 24 months of probation and must meet other conditions of his sentencing.

Jeremie Dalin, 17, of the 200 block of Bridle Path, Fox River Grove, was sentenced Aug. 15 in Lake County Circuit Court by Judge Christopher Stride. (more)

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Megan Meier: Attorney asks for medical records of dead girl August 21, 2008

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St. Louis Post – Dispatch, 20 August 2008

A lawyer for the woman accused of using the Internet to bully a Dardenne Prairie teen to the point of suicide has requested some of the girl’s medical records, claiming the girl was mentally ill and suggesting a change in her medication could have caused her death. (more of this disgusting story)

4chan terrorist hoaxer Jeremie Dalin will serve two years of felony probation August 19, 2008

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Lake County News Sun, 18 August 2008

A former Barrington High School student who was convicted of making false terrorist threats has been ordered to tour the county speaking to students about the importance of being cautious on the Internet.

Jeremie Dalin avoided jail time at his sentencing hearing Friday, but other provisions of his sentence will limit his Web use, and he’ll serve two years of felony probation. (read article)

ALERT: California Cyberbullying Bill May End Up In Political Limbo August 18, 2008

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Ventura County Star, 18 August 2008

In an ironic twist, a bill to help stop cyberbullying in California schools may end up in political limbo because of the governor’s attempt to bully lawmakers into passing a state budget.

The measure by Assemblyman Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, gives educators the authority to suspend or expel bullies who use text messages or the Internet during school, going to or from school or during off-campus school activities, to pick on fellow students.

Assembly Bill 86 is nearing passage in the Legislature. After clearing the Senate on Monday, it headed back to the Assembly — where it already passed easily — in order for lawmakers to consider amendments tacked on in the Senate.

However, a frustrated Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger earlier this month turned up the pressure on lawmakers for their budget inaction by announcing he would veto any bill sent to him. So, once AB86 clears its remaining Assembly hurdle, it will be placed in some sort of legislative netherworld. (read the rest of the article)

Research on cyber bullying, technical issues expose dangers August 17, 2008

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Manila Times, 17 August 2008

The research studies made by experts on the physical and mental health hazards of mobile phones and hi-tech equipment, including computers, have yielded important findings about “cyberbullying.” “Cyberbullying: its nature and impact in secondary school pupils” is reported in Blackwell Publishing’s Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines, Volume 49, Number 4, April 2008, pp. 376-385(10). (read article)

Google Ordered to Unmask Mystery Blogger in India August 15, 2008

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Wired, 14 August 2008

Google has been instructed to reveal the identity of an anonymous blogger in a defamation lawsuit filed by an Indian construction company against them, reports the Wall Street Journal.

The blogger known only as “Toxic Writer,” is accused of attacking the Mumbai-based Gremach Infrastructure Equipments & Projects Ltd. in what they are calling a “hate campaign.” (read full article)

Government: Cyberbullying is a New Phenomenon, as is Social Networking August 14, 2008

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Law Blog, 13 August 2008

Last month, when H. Dean Steward, the lawyer for Lori Drew in the MySpace suicide case, filed his three motions to dismiss, he wrote: “If the government’s statutory construction is correct and the [Computer Fraud & Abuse Act] criminalizes violating a website [terms of service], then the statute is void for vagueness because it fails to provide warning of what is prohibited and ensures discriminatory enforcement . . .”

Yesterday, the government, represented by AUSA Mark Krause, shot back, filing three oppositions to the failure to state a claim motion, to the vagueness motion and to the unconstitutional delegation of prosecutorial power motion. (read full article)

California Considers New Cyberbullying Law August 12, 2008

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Tech Policy Central, 12 August 2008

California’s Senate voted yesterday in favor of a bill that would allow schools to suspend or expel students who engage in cyberbullying. The State Assembly must now reconcile the Sentate’s version with its own before deciding to send the legislation to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for signature. If enacted, California will join other states like Iowa, New Jersey, Oregon, Minnesota and Missouri that have passed laws to try and prevent cyberbullying and harrassment. (read full article)

Book: Cyberbullying – Bullying Beyond the Schoolyard August 11, 2008

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Yubanet Review

“Teens and tweens have been bullying each other for generations. The bullies of today, however, have the advantage of utilizing technology such as computers, cell phones and other electronic devices to inflict harm on others. In their book due out this month, Bullying Beyond the Schoolyard: Preventing and Responding to Cyberbullying, Dr. Sameer Hinduja, Florida Atlantic University researcher, assistant professor in the department of criminal justice in the College of Architecture, Urban and Public Affairs, and Internet safety expert, and Dr. Justin W. Patchin, assistant professor of criminal justice at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, provide a comprehensive guide to identify, prevent and respond to this increasingly serious problem. The book is primarily based on Hinduja and Patchin’s original research with thousands of adolescents, many of whom were victims of cyberbullying. In addition to providing numerous practical strategies for educators, parents and other youth-serving adults, the book includes personal stories and case scenarios, an extensive overview of terminology and legal issues, and a clear explanation of the scope and prevalence of online aggression among youth.”

Queens Federation of Churches Warns of on-line vandalism of religious sites August 5, 2008

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Worldwide Faith News, 4 August 2008

A group calling itself “Anonymous,” specializing in on-line vandalism, obscenity, and harassment, has
stepped up its attacks on ethnic and religious minorities and individual citizens — and church human rights groups, including the Queens
Federation of Churches, are sounding the alarm.

“These people are truly cyber-terrorists,” said Rev. N. J. L’Heureux, Jr., Executive Director of the Queens Federation of Churches, who serves
as the Moderator of the National Council of Churches Committee on Religious Liberty. “Their manifestos and their campaigns are aimed at
creating as much destruction as possible.”

Among those whose pain Anonymous laughs at, are those who suffer from epilepsy. Wired.com reported that hackers, likely Anonymous, had
descended on an epilepsy support message board and used code and flashing animation to trigger migraine headaches and seizures in some
users. Anonymous responded, “The epilepsy raid was mostly win, but there was one glaring failure, in that nobody died from our attacks.”

When a Finnish Anonymous poster named Pekka-Eric Auvinen said online that he was going to kill people at his high school, another Anonymous
member wrote, “DO IT, FAGGOT.” On November 7, 2007, Auvinen killed nine people including himself.

Most recently, June 27, 2008, as reported by MTV News, Anonymous hackers defaced two popular Hip-Hop music websites, substituting fake headlines
and obviously photoshopped pictures saturated with racial slurs and other offensive terms. The CEO of SOHH.com, one of the attacked sites,
issued a statement saying, “It appears that hackers are specifically targeting Black, Hispanic, Asian and Jewish youth who ascribe to hip-hop
culture.”

The New York Times Magazine (August 3, 2008) focused on “The Trolls Among Us,” examining Internet message boards which have spawned groups
such as “Anonymous.”

In 2007, Fox News documented some of the crimes of Anonymous: destroying websites, death threats and spreading lies about people’s lives.

Anonymous posted their response on YouTube with a creepy synthetic voice-over: “We are the face of chaos and the harbingers of judgment. We
laugh in the face of tragedy. We’ll mock those who are in pain. We rush the lives of other people simply because we can. Hundred die in a plane
crash. We laugh. The nation mourns over a school shooting, we laugh. We’re the embodiment of humanity with no remorse, no caring, no love, or
no sense of morality.”

Meeting in Los Angeles on May 6th, a group of more than 100 law enforcement and government officials, clergy and educators discussed the
rise of Internet hate crimes, with the activities like Anonymous featuring prominently.

“Anonymous has even called themselves ‘Legion,’ a reference to the demons cast out by Christ in Marc 5:9 and Luke 8:30,” says L’Heureux.
“People of all faiths, working with law enforcement as necessary, should see that this sort of cyber-crime is cast out of the Internet, and the
real world, both.”

The Trolls Among Us August 4, 2008

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New York Times on the character of “Internet trolls” or better: those behind cyber-crimes:

One afternoon in the spring of 2006, for reasons unknown to those who knew him, Mitchell Henderson, a seventh grader from Rochester, Minn., took a .22-caliber rifle down from a shelf in his parents’ bedroom closet and shot himself in the head. The next morning, Mitchell’s school assembled in the gym to begin mourning. His classmates created a virtual memorial on MySpace and garlanded it with remembrances. One wrote that Mitchell was “an hero to take that shot, to leave us all behind. God do we wish we could take it back. . . . ” Someone e-mailed a clipping of Mitchell’s newspaper obituary to MyDeathSpace.com, a Web site that links to the MySpace pages of the dead. From MyDeathSpace, Mitchell’s page came to the attention of an Internet message board known as /b/ and the “trolls,” as they have come to be called, who dwell there. (go to the remainder of the 10 page article)