Hard times for the bully business

Sometimes bullying people just doesn’t work out, even if you do it on the internet, and even if all you’re doing is posting pictures of naked girls without their permission.

The founder of a so-called “revenge porn” website has been ordered to pay $250,000 (£170,000) in damages for defamation.

Hunter Moore was found to have made false claims about the chief executive of an anti-bullying website.

Mr Moore used Twitter to falsely claim James McGibney was a paedophile who possessed child pornography.

Mr Moore’s website used to post naked images of people without their permission. He closed it in 2012.

But three days later he was at it again.

Mr Moore used his Twitter account, which has almost 150,000 followers, to make several derogatory comments about Mr McGibney.

Mr Moore encouraged others to post the claims in return for free clothing – Mr McGibney said he would be taking action against those that did so.

“‘Internet tough guys’ are also legally accountable for their actions,” Mr McGibney wrote.

“Hunter and some of his followers now realise this, along with their parents since some of his followers appear to be under the age of 18.”

The settlement amount was said to be a “conservative estimate” of reputational damage caused by Mr Moore’s comments.

The money would donated to women’s shelters across the US, Mr McGibney added.

So you’re not allowed to slander people? Even on the internet? I thought you were.

In addition to the defamation claim, Mr McGibney has launched a class action lawsuit against the site, and has invited users to come forward to share their complaints.

“We’re doing this mostly for the completely powerless, under-age women who were verbally harassed after Hunter posted their completely naked, unedited photos on his site.

“We’ll soon be launching a brand new site for IsAnyoneUp.com that not only shows the history and eventual dismantling of this disturbing website, but also brings valuable information to people who have been wronged by similar behaviour.”

Jeez, they were only having a little fun, and free speech.

One Twitter warrior had a strange reaction to the story.

Interesting libel case. I wonder if this sort of ruling would apply to accusations of “misogyny” & “active racism”?


The relevant comparison is to accusations of “misogyny” as opposed to, say, accusations of being a smelly ugly cunt?

Yeh I don’t think so.


  1. F [nucular nyandrothol] says

    Me neither.

    Funny and just it is when someone with a little privilege and power votes against the status quo. Not funny: That privilege and power is pretty much required for fast action.

  2. Brian E says

    But they’re only speaking truth to power. We know, every last one of us, that women wear the pants in this world. :)

  3. Stacy says

    Hey, Ophelia, everybody knows it’s worse to be called “misogynist” or “racist” than to actually have to deal with misogyny and racism on a daily basis.

    The latter’s a drag, probably, but hey-ho. The former has to do with respectable-middle-class-white-man-reputation and/or feelings, which is, you know, serious.

    (Ohai, Jeremy Stangroom! How ya doin’?)

  4. ck says

    But won’t someone stand up for the sacred right of freeze peach? If bullies don’t have the right to smear lies across the internet, then we’ll have secret police arresting people for thought crime. Won’t someone think of the freeze peach?

  5. rnilsson says

    Tangentially relevant (Dagens Nyheter, Sweden’s biggest daily (not counting evening tabloids)) (legal terms approximately, inexpertly translated):

    Net mobbing may be actionable as wrongful death
    Police are investigating if the person or persons who bullied the 13-year-old girl in Kumla who later took her life may have been guilty of the felony ‘causing death’. Suspicions are aimed at a boy of about 15.

    Last Friday, March 8, the girl died hit by a train. Police suspect it was a suicide.

    This was after the girl had been harassed on the net. Pictures and movies of her had been laid out on the net and she had also been threatened that this would happen. The threats were apparently maid in aid of making the girl pose, says Örebro police spokesperson Mats Nylén. He also says that suspicions are focused on a boy of about 15 years of age.

    – He seems to be the one who has done this but there may also be other persons around and about, says Nylén.

    Mats Nylén defends the police strategy of pointing at an early stage to a possible connection between the mobbing and the death by saying that they wanted to go out with a warning in order to prevent others getting into trouble.

    – We have a duty to prevent crime and it is important for us to get at information from other young people who might be hurt in this way. That is why I have made a statement in this way.

    Police have impounded at least one computer and intends to acquire access to mobile phones and reading pads which may be valuable in the hunt for evidence. Other suspected crimes that the preliminary investigation concern are sexual harassment, illegal threats and illegal compulsion.


  6. eric says

    So, Mr. Moore posts naked pictures of women without their consent, calls another guy a pedophile, and the law comes down on him for doing the second of those two things?

    Um, yeah, you missed something there Mr. Law.

  7. grumpyoldfart says

    People have been known to hide their cash reserves, plead poverty, and declare bankruptcy in order to avoid paying compensation to their victims. I’m guessing Moore has a few more tricks up his sleeve.

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