An Outlier In Online Speech Decisions

Law360, New York (February 5, 2014, 11:05 AM EST) -- ‚ÄčA recent decision of Virginia’s intermediate appellate court cuts against a prevailing trend in the protection of anonymous free speech. In Yelp Inc. v. Hadeed Carpet Cleaning Inc., No. 0116-13-4 (Va. Ct. App. Jan. 7, 2014), the Virginia Court of Appeals held that Yelp was required to identify seven users who criticized a carpet-cleaning service in online reviews.

User-driven websites such as Yelp typically are not required to divulge user information in response to discovery requests in litigation. Courts have outlined strict standards for unmasking users’...
To view the full article, register now.