Skip to content

Subpoena to blogger seeks everything, including Web site viewers

Post categories

  1. Protecting Sources and Materials
A Virginia-based blogger is fighting a subpoena that seeks the identities of everyone who viewed an online article he wrote…

A Virginia-based blogger is fighting a subpoena that seeks the identities of everyone who viewed an online article he wrote about a defamation lawsuit, the Citizen Media Law Project reports.

The blogger, Waldo Jaquith, publishes cvillenews.com in Charlottesville, Va. In December, he blogged about a defamation lawsuit filed by Thomas Garrett, a local chicken farmer and Hollywood publicist, against a Charlottesville weekly newspaper, The Hook. Garrett is suing The Hook, alleging that the paper defamed him in its coverage of state criminal proceedings against him.

Jaquith blogged about the defamation suit and attracted 81 comments on his Web site. Garrett followed up by sending him a sweepingly broad subpoena in hopes of boosting his defamation suit.

The subpoena asks for a vast amount of material relating to Jaquith’s blog, including the IP addresses for everyone who viewed the article, the names and/or IP addresses for everyone who commented on the article, the time and date of every comment and all computer logs generated in connection with the article. It also asks for all e-mail and other written communications Jaquith has received since Dec. 19 having anything to do with Garrett, the lawsuit or the article.

Jaquith, who is representing himself in the litigation, filed a motion to quash the subpoena on Monday.