Put on your Sunday (Law)suit >> The Revealer
My latest post for The Revealer:
22 May 2012
Ashley Baxstrom: In squint-at-the-screen-to-be-sure news, The Raw Story reports that a church in Oregon is suing a woman for posting negative reviews on Google.
Of course it’s more complicated than that. To review: Julie Anne Smith left the Beaverton Grace Bible Church a few years ago. She claims she and her family were shunned by church members at the direction of Pastor Chuck O’Neal. Smith responded by posting negative reviews of BGBC on Google and DEX. (A Google search for reviews found over 600, many of which have been posted since the article broke.) “We do it with restaurants and hotels and whatnot, and I thought, why not do it with this church?” Smith told KATU.
The church is suing Smith, her daughter, and three other commenters for $500,000, claiming defamation over the use of words like “creepy,” “cult,” “control tactics” and “spiritual abuse.”
Now my immediate reaction, early in my own reading of this incident, was that the church needs to calm the heck down and can’t sue somebody for saying what they think. Get over yourselves – freedom of expression – et cetera.
But. That would be me leaping to conclusions. Silly me! Nothing is ever so simple!
Read the rest of the article here.