Legal threats and the internet

And the price for the most stupid legal threat goes to restaurant Lehtovaara in Helsinki.

Herkko Hietanen is a lawyer specialized within IT-law. He had a very bad experience at the Lehtovaara and posted a letter to the restaurant after the unlucky visit. They did not answer, so Herkko posted the letter on his blog. A while later this letter is hit number two on Google if you do a search for the restaurant. So, the owner of the restaurant sends Herkko a legal threat demanding (among other things) that he should remove the letter from the web and pay him around 80 000 euro in damage.

Was that a smart move? I guess not. The case have already reached BoingBoing under the headline “Helsinki’s Lehtovaara: Crappy service and a bullying owner“. And, as Herkko states on his blog:

They apparently hadn’t done any background checks. I have taught law and technology in several universities, I am a founding member of one of the biggest cyber rights organization in Europe and have defended publicly digital freedom of expression. Do they really think that they have a winning strategy? I am sure that many people would have rushed to take down the content. Not me. I will see their bluff.

Lehtovaara bring it on!

If there existed a list of the five worst people to sue for a case like this, Mr. Herkko would be on it. Yes, bring it on! This could lead to some great entertainment!

“It is the opinion of us and our lawyers that you are fucking morons”

And, while we are talking about the matter of entertaining legal threats. The Pirate Bay in Sweden has a great strategy. On the page where you find the contact mail for The Pirate Bay they clearly state:

Any complaints from copyright and/or lobby organizations will be ridiculed and published at the site.

And, they mean it. Here is a quote from their letter to the lawyers of Electronic Arts:

Hello and thank you for contacting us. We have shut down the website in question.

Oh wait, just kidding. We haven’t, since the site in question is fully legal. Unlike certain other countries, such as the one you’re in, we have sane copyright laws here. But we also have polar bears roaming the streets and attacking people 😦

You find the rest of the very entertaining answers from The Pirate Bay here.

Legal threats and the internet

2 thoughts on “Legal threats and the internet

  1. […] This picture is not from a zoo Context is everything. This picture is of a sign that is fairly common here in Florida. Quite exotic for a norwegian that lives in a country where a tiny snake is one of the most dangerous animals you can bump into. A tiny snake that will hurt you slightly more than a common bumble bee if it bites. If this sign was placed in a zoo it would not be very interesting. Context and expectations are important for all stories. For marketing. For blogs. For podcasts. Don’t underestimate the value of a good backgound story. A story about yourself, about the situation around what you are communicating. The story about Herkko Heitanen and Lehtovaara is not that interesting without the background information that tells you that Mr. Heitanen is a lawyer specialized within IT-law and a founding member of one of the biggest cyber rights organization in Europe. The movie Super Size Me is of course not very interesting if you don’t know that it is a true story and that the maker of the movie actually did eat all that junk. […]

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