United we stand, united we fall

By | 29th March 2012

While discovering interesting facts such as the fact that the state motto of the American State of Kentucky is “United we stand, Divided we fall” it is inevitable that in a blog of this type we miss an article, a development or something of general interest……and it has happened again!

Millnet is pleased to be associated with Chris Dale’s e-Disclosure Information Project and it is to one of his posts which I turn as I missed the case of Patel v Unite the Union.

In the course of an action for defamation in respect of comments posted on an internet forum owned and operated by the Unite union, but where the union claimed that the forum had been deleted and it could not identify those who had made the postings, Mr Patel persuaded His Honour Judge Richard Parkes QC, sitting as a Judge of the High Court, to grant an order against the union requiring it to make a reasonable search for information and to serve a witness statement.

I can do no better than attach a link to the post written by Chris: Patel v Unite – order for investigation of deleted Internet forum [e-Disclosure Information Project, 13 March, 2012].  While I am not for one moment suggesting that the union was engaged in any nefarious practices in deleting the forum, it can be seen once again how dangerous it can be to assume that what is deleted remains deleted.

Social media are everywhere these days and this case illustrates how important it is how you use them and the orders a court is prepared to make to –

“satisfy the requirement of proportionality and the need to respect so far as possible the privacy and data protection rights of BASSA members.”