Bootleg Blaney Bows to Injunction

Donal Blaney has some good news:

The hitherto anonymous individual who infringed my intellectual property rights and set up the fake @blaneyblarney account on Twitter has, on service of the injunction requiring him to stop and to reveal his identity, agreed to comply with the order.

…As I said on Thursday, the injunction has nothing to do with free speech. As a libertarian I have blogged on that topic here many, many times. The injunction was, instead, all about the protection of my intellectual property rights, relying on breach of copyright and passing off.

We may cough at some of the actual issues here: Blaney does not always champion “free speech”, and last year he sent Tim Ireland a legal threat on behalf of Paul Staines…after Tim mentioned Staines’ use of copyrighted images on his blog. But the principle is a good one – some people have reason to remain anonymous on-line, but those who do so in order to bully, harass, threaten, or deceive deserve to be called to account. There have been a couple of fake blogs in my name, and I recently received a fake email impersonating someone else, for reasons that remain unclear. Ironically, the legal precedent may be of use Tim Ireland, who has just in the past few weeks been the victim of a threatening campaign on Twitter.

As a legal first, Blaney’s injunction has been reported widely:

A testület úgy véli, hogy a blaneysblarney címen szerepl? profil jogtalanul bitorolja Donal Blaney személyiségét…???? ???????????? ????? ????? ?? ????? ??????? ?????? ?????? (Donal Blaney), ????????? ??????????? ????? Griffin Law, ??????? ? ?????? ?? ????? ?????? ???…???(Donal Blaney)??????????????????@blaneysblarney??????Twitter??

In 2007 Peter Hitchens’ name was used by a commentator on Paul Staines’ website, annoying the real Peter Hitchens. According to the New Statesman:

The scuffle had reached a climax with the real PH visiting the fake PH, who, in a state of panic, phoned [Staines] to say that “Peter Hitchens has just cycled up my drive”. He didn’t answer the door.