Via Volokh Conspiracy comes a story from The Boston Globe about yet another situation where someone's "anonymous" blogging comes back to bite them in the ass in the real world. In short, a Boston area pediatrician was sued for malpractice after the death of a 12-year-old patient. The doc maintained a blog, under the pseudonym "Dr. Flea," on which he eventually began discussing his malpractice trial:
In his blog, Flea had ridiculed the plaintiff's case and the plaintiff's lawyer. He had revealed the defense strategy. He had accused members of the jury of dozing.The discovery of Flea's writings led to a dramatic courtroom confrontation:
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Elizabeth N. Mulvey, the lawyer who represented [plaintiffs] Vinroy and Deborah Binns and unmasked Lindeman as Flea, said she laughed when she read a posting at the start of the trial in which Lindeman nicknamed her Carissa Lunt, noticed that she bit her fingernails and mused, 'Wonder if she's a pillow biter, too?'
As Ivy League-educated pediatrician Robert P. Lindeman sat on the stand in Suffolk Superior Court this month, defending himself in a malpractice suit involving the death of a 12-year-old patient, the opposing counsel startled him with a question.The jury never got to figure out quite what was going on, as Flea quickly settled for an undisclosed sum. Remember, kids - what you write on the Internet is there forever and if you write something stupid, it will come to hunt you down.
Was Lindeman Flea?
Flea, jurors in the case didn't know, was the screen name for a blogger who had written often and at length about a trial remarkably similar to the one that was going on in the courtroom that day.
In his blog, Flea had ridiculed the plaintiff's case and the plaintiff's lawyer. He had revealed the defense strategy. He had accused members of the jury of dozing.
With the jury looking on in puzzlement, Lindeman admitted that he was, in fact, Flea.
Curious about what exactly Flea wrote? Sure you are - indulge your curiosity here.