In this fake letter produced by Steve Cox for this very funny Films That Almost Got Made That Time Forgot piece, Stanley Kubrick writes to James T. Aubrey, Jr, an amateur Desi Arnez Jr impersonator who was also head of MGM studios. Steve has Kubrick acknowledge that Aubrey is legally in a position to make a sequel to 2001, but has a dire warning for him. It's a pity it's not real -- I want to inhabit the continuum in which it is genuine. (via Warren Ellis)
Group whose Wikipedia entry was deleted for non-notability threatens lawsuit against Wikipedian who participated in the discussion
Benjamin Mako Hill writes, "Last year, I participated in a discussion on Wikipedia that led to the deletion of an article about the "Institute for Cultural Diplomacy." Because I edit Wikipedia using my real name, the ICD was able to track me down. Over the last month or so, they threated me with legal action and have now gotten their lawyers involved. I've documented the whole sad saga on my blog. I think the issue raises some important concerns about Wikipedia in general."
Donfried has made it very clear that his organization really wants a Wikipedia article and that they believe they are being damaged without one. But the fact that he wants one doesn’t mean that Wikipedia’s policies mean he should have one. Anonymous editors in Berlin and in unknown locations have made it clear that they really want a Wikipedia article about the ICD that does not include criticism. Not only do Wikipedia’s policies and principles not guarantee them this, Wikipedia might be hurt as a project when this happens.
The ICD claims to want to foster open dialogue and criticism. I think they sound like a pretty nice group working toward issues I care about personally. I wish them success.
But there seems to be a disconnect between their goals and the actions of both their leader and proponents. Because I used my real name and was skeptical about the organization on discussion pages on Wikipedia, I was tracked down and threatened. Donfried insinuated that I was motivated to “sabotage” his organization and threatened legal action if I do not answer his questions. The timing of his first letter — the day after the ICD page was recreated — means that I was unwilling to act on my commitment to Wikipedia and its policies.
hh1edits's "The 100 Greatest Movie Threats of All Time" is a truly fabulous 11:37 worth of threatening behavior -- angry, calm, brave, terrified. The creator casts an admirably broad net, including appearances from Monty Python, Wil Wheaton, and the Wicked Witch of the West.
The 100 Greatest Movie Threats of All Time (Thanks, Fipi Lele!)
Chick Lit Girls, which publishes positive reviews for money, is threatening legal action against a writer who publicized that fact earlier this week.
Describing itself as "basically goodreads[sic] for women", Chick Lit Girls has the stated mission of not publishing negative reviews. To quote, "we're here to help authors, not destroy them!"
When author Michele Gorman offered her latest novel for review, however, they first requested a $95 fee, then accused her of "harrassing[sic]" them when she criticized the practice on Twitter and at her blog.
We have the ability to track IP addresses, so I would think twice before you begin to defame our name…That is illegal, and we will take action. Our attorney has been notified!
After Chick Lit Girls pointed out that they do disclose the fee—albeit in the fine print—Gorman removed remarks that suggested otherwise. Gorman also removed named references to "Chick Lit Girls" from her site, but did not remove her criticism of paid reviews.
At Popehat, Ken White describes the "barely-literate" threats as bumptious and doomed to failure:
People who issue thuggish legal threats to those who criticize them ... can't be trusted, should not receive your business or traffic, and deserve no respect. Ms. Gorman made a mistake — sort of, given ChickLitGirls' rather vague dislosure — which she corrected. But it's clear from the title, text, and follow-up to the ChickLitGirls' threat that what they are really attempting to do is chill and deter criticism of their business model. That's why they describe criticism as "harassment" and "threats." That's contemptible. Moreover, it's legally unsupportable. If they are foolish enough to push it, they will lose, badly.