I was reviewing some of the exhibits that had be filed by Team Kimberlin in a couple of their LOLsuits, and I was struck by how many of them actually helped the defendants rather than the plaintiff. That, in turn, reminded me of this episode of Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign which first ran four years ago today.
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SOUND: Skype rings once.
JOHNNY: Johnny Atsign.
RULE 5 GIRL: (Telephone Filter) Good morning, Johnny.
JOHNNY: Good Morning. What’s up?
RULE 5 GIRL: (Telephone Filter) No much with me, but have you seen The Grouch’s timeline this morning?
JOHNNY: What now?
RULE 5 GIRL: (Telephone Filter) He says he’s filed another federal lawsuit.
JOHNNY: Again? I guess I better check on PACER to what he’s filed.
MUSIC: Theme up and under.
ANNOUNCER: The Lickspittle Broadcasting System presents W. J. J. Hoge in the transcribed adventures of the man with the action-packed Twitter account, America’s fabulous free-lance Internet investigator …
JOHNNY: Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign!
MUSIC: Theme up to music out.
JOHNNY: The following is partial extract of the tweets sent and received during my extended investigation of The Undead Matter.
JOHNNY TWEETS: (SYNTH VOICE) @Zombie I think I’ve found a brain that you won’t be interested in.
JOHNNY: The Grouch had filed yet another federal lawsuit for defamation and whatnot. This time he managed to get the requirement for diversity correct by avoiding any Maryland defendants on strictly state law claims. Or so it seemed. The Grouch had posted what appeared to be his complaint online, but when I checked on the court’s website PACER, there was nothing there.
ZOMBIE DMS: (SYNTH VOICE) @JohnnyAtsign Is that suit for real? Is it on PACER?
JOHNNY DMS: (SYNTH VOICE) @Zombie Nothing yet.
JOHNNY: I figured that, even if the complaint The Grouch posted was a draft, it would be close to the actual filing. I decided to begin investigating The Grouch’s claims. Several things jumped out at me immediately.
THE GROUCH: (Through a small speaker) On 7 March, 2014 … on 13 March, 2014 … on 15 March, 2014 … on or about March 28, 2014 … on April 18, 2014 …
JOHNNY: The suit was filed on the 27th of April, 2015, and the Maryland statute of limitations on defamation is one year. All of those dates are more than a year before the suit was filed, so, even if what The Grouch alleged were true, anything that happened on those dates is barred from consideration. Not only that, the U.S. District Court applies that same statute of limitations of false light invasion of privacy.
As I kept reading, it was downhill from there.
ANNOUNCER: When the recording session for this week’s episode breaks up, I’m heading over to the coffee pot and filing up my Johnny Atsign Travel Mug for the drive home. Johnny Atsign Travel Mugs are exclusively available along with lots of other goodies at The Hogewash Store. Stop by today and spend some of your hard earned cash in support of Team Lickspittle. Or hit the Tip Jar. They’re both ways you can support the Team.
JOHNNY: Eventually, the complaint was posted on PACER. I downloaded it, and it looked like there was a trouble with the file. Rather than go down to Baltimore for riot season, I gave the Clerk’s Office a call.
CLERK: (Telephone Filter) (fading up) … so, yes, the file online matches the paper copy we have.
JOHNNY: I thought the court had a page limitation for online documents.
CLERK: (Telephone Filter) We do, but it’s over a hundred pages. If there’s a logical way to break documents up, we do that. Like, if there’s a lot of exhibits, we’ll scan each one separately. If a single document is too long to be scanned in, we still list it. That way people researching the case are aware of it and can come to the courthouse to examine it and get hard copies.
JOHNNY: So, if I understand you correctly, if those exhibit had been too long, they would have still been noted in PACER. And your file copy doesn’t have them.
CLERK: (Telephone Filter) That’s right.
JOHNNY: OK. Thanks. You’ve saved me a trip downtown.
CLERK: (Telephone Filter) No problem. We’ll see you some other time. Bye.
JOHNNY: Yeah. Stay safe. Good bye.
SOUND: Telephone receiver hung up.
JOHNNY TWEETS: @Zombie No, they don’t have the exhibits either.
ANNOUNCER: Now, here’s our star to tell you about next week’s intriguing episode of our story.
JOHNNY: Next time? Adventures in exhibitionism. Join us, won’t you?
Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign!
MUSIC: Swell theme and under
ANNOUNCER: Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign, starring W. J. J. Hoge, is transcribed in Westminster. Be sure to join us next Monday, same time and URL, for the next exciting episode of Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign.
MUSIC: Theme up to music out.
ANNOUNCER: Johnny Atsign is a work of fiction. If anyone thinks it’s about him, he should read Proverbs 28:1.
This is LBS, the Lickspittle Broadcasting System.
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Why bother with exhibits when you’re going to voluntarily dismiss a LOLsuit with prejudice?