MIAMI– LAWFUEL – Litigation Newswire –In a five-page opinion issued today, a lawsuit against the popular Web site, www.DontDateHimGirl.com, was dismissed. Todd Hollis, a Pittsburgh attorney who claims to have been defamed by statements posted on the site by women who say they dated him, filed the defamation case in June 2006 in Pennsylvania state court.
“Defendant’s Web site is accessible to anyone connected to the Internet anywhere in the world,” stated Judge R. Stanton Wettick’s order. “Under plaintiff’s argument, defendant could be hauled into court in any state for any controversy. This result would be inconsistent with the Supreme Court’s understanding of the requirements of due process.”
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Center for Democracy and Technology and the ACLU of Pennsylvania filed an amicus brief in support of DontDateHimGirl.com and its owner Tasha Cunningham, a former newspaper columnist for the Miami Herald.
“I am gratified by the judge’s ruling and for the support I have received from around the world in this case,” said Cunningham. “This is a victory not only for DontDateHimGirl.com, but for free speech on the Internet and women everywhere.”
The popular site, which averages more than 500,000 hits per day, is a forum for women to post about the dating experiences they’ve had with men. Less than two years since its creation, the site now boasts more than one million subscribers.
In recent months similar cases have been dismissed in courts in California and Texas against social networking staples MySpace.com and Craiglist.com using the Communications Decency Act, a law which protects forum providers on the Internet against legal claims arising from posts made by third parties.
“The courts and the federal government have said time and time again that Web site owners are not liable for postings made by third-party users,” said Lida Rodriguez-Taseff, a partner with the law firm of Duane Morris who represented Cunningham in this case. “While Judge Wettick’s ruling related to the narrow issue of jurisdiction, we believe that his order confirmed this sentiment today.”
DontDateHimGirl.com is an international social networking website for women in the dating world. The popular site averages over 500,000 hits daily. Launched in 2005, DontDateHimGirl.com has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Sunday Times of London and hundreds of other international media outlets around the world.