Manalapan, NJ - A Superior Court judge in New Jersey quashed a bogus subpoena for the identity of an anonymous blogger Friday, protecting the free speech rights of a critic writing about a local government controversy.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) represented the anonymous blogger, known as "daTruthSquad," on a site hosted by Google's Blogspot service. After the blogger strongly criticized a malpractice lawsuit filed by the township of Manalapan against its former city attorney, the township subpoenaed Google for "daTruthSquad's" identity, as well as for any emails, blog drafts, and other information Google had about the blogger. In a hearing Friday, Superior Court Judge Terence Flynn quashed the subpoena, ruling that the blogger had a First Amendment to anonymous speech.
"We're grateful that Judge Flynn upheld the First Amendment rights of our client and recognized that anonymous speakers should not be intimidated into silence through the discovery process," said EFF Staff Attorney Matt Zimmerman. "Now 'daTruthSquad' can continue to discuss township business without fear of government reprisal."
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