Courtroom Refuses to Order Me to Take away References to Frequent Litigant from Regulation Overview Article

I’m writing about this each as a result of it strikes me as an attention-grabbing instance of what litigants generally attempt to do (and sometimes succeed), and in addition as a result of I believed our readers should see what the litigant accused me of—maybe a few of chances are you’ll agree together with her—and see my response. That’s significantly so as a result of some readers would possibly view this as influencing my basic views on harassment restraining order circumstances, which I’ll likely weblog about extra sooner or later; I ought to notice, although, that I’ve been writing and litigating about these issues extensively lengthy earlier than this petition was filed towards me (see, e.g., this 2013 article and this 2021 article, plus too many weblog posts and briefs to checklist right here).

A number of months in the past, I wrote a few frequent litigant, in reference to a federal case of hers in wherein (1) she was first allowed to proceed pseudonymously however then (2) was depseudonymized by the decide after proof associated to her previous circumstances had emerged. I used her title in reference to that case, because the decide had, and in addition drew connections (primarily based on public data) between that case and different circumstances that she had been litigating pseudonymously.

A number of weeks in the past, the litigant filed Doe v. Volokh, No. 22STRO05198 (L.A. Superior Ct.), a petition for a “harassment restraining order” in California court docket. She acknowledged in her declaration that,

On July 11, 2022 I acquired two harassing cellphone calls from completely different individuals, calling me cunt, bitch, slut, mendacity on males and many others and indicating they might rape and kill me. After the second name I instantly shut down my cellphone and preserve it off. I used to be confused as a result of I didn’t know these individuals. I used to be terrifying and fearful for my life. Later I figured that Eugene Volokh (Volokh) has revealed my private info on-line and the demise threats got here from his readers/haters. His publication contains incomplete details and portrays me in a false gentle. He states that I used to be convicted of a number of crimes however he leaves out the truth that I’m presently searching for post-conviction aid resulting from wrongful conviction. I beforehand acquired a number of court docket orders to guard my actual title as a rape sufferer. He publishes my actual title related to all these circumstances. His publication successfully makes all these protecting orders void. Additional, he alleges that I had made comparable rape accusations towards different individuals which once more portrays me in a false gentle.

(Notice that the “private info” was simply her title and the circumstances she was concerned in; I didn’t publish any additional details about her, comparable to her cellphone quantity or the like.) Her authorized argument was principally this:

On July 12, 2022 I made contact with Volokh and requested him to respect the court docket orders and my privateness and take remedial motion. He refused to take action even after I knowledgeable him of the demise threats I acquired. He alleged it was his proper to free speech and cited Florida Star v. B.J.F. , 491 U.S. 524 (1989). His reliance is inappropriate within the following facets:

First, given “the sensitivity and significance of the pursuits offered in clashes between First Modification and privateness rights” the Courtroom refused to simply accept invites to “maintain broadly that truthful publication could by no means be punished in line with the First Modification.” The Courtroom “emphasised every time that we had been resolving this battle solely because it arose in a discrete factual context.” The Florida Star v. B. J. F, 491 U.S. 524, 530-536 (1989).

The Courtroom has additionally acknowledged that because of the extremely important pursuits it does “not rule out the chance that, in a correct case, imposing civil sanctions for publication of the title of a rape sufferer may be so overwhelmingly essential to advance these pursuits.” Id. at 537. The Courtroom concluded that it did “not maintain that truthful publication is robotically constitutionally protected.” Id. at 541. The details in Florida Star present a vivid instance of the damaging penalties that disclosing a sufferer’s title could presumably have.

“The best of free speech just isn’t with out limitations. It’s at all times to be exercised with due regard for the rights of others.” Seven Up Bottling Co. v. Grocery Drivers Union, 233 P.2nd 617, 619 (Cal. Ct. App. 1951). “In California, speech that constitutes ‘harassment’ inside the which means of part 527.6 just isn’t constitutionally protected, and the sufferer of the harassment could get hold of injunctive aid.” Huntingdon Life Sciences, Inc. v. Cease Huntingdon Animal Cruelly USA, Inc. (2005) 129 Cal.App.4th 1228, 1250. See additionally Brekke v. Wills (2005) 125 Cal.App.4th 1400, 1410-1413 [Holding that song lyrics, if used to harass and ridicule, are not protected speech; affirming injunction where the defendant wrote three vitriolic letters to a third party with the intention that they would be discovered and read by plaintiff.]

Second, Florida Star was an area weekly newspaper who revealed the title of the sufferer of a sexual assault. The publication of a weekly newspaper was a one-time publication to solely native residents. Florida Star’s publication was restricted as to time and scope of readers. Florida Star didn’t proceed to publish the sufferer’s title each week. Nevertheless, Volokh’s publication is on-line, freely out there to all the world, and endlessly. Anybody in Europe, Asia, or America can have entry to his publication. Volokh’s publication makes me a weak goal of worldwide haters. His publication invitations worldwide haters to threaten, stalk, and commit violence towards me. “Conduct or speech that’s bodily threatening, harassing, intimidating, or assaultive just isn’t constitutionally protected.” Individuals ex Rel. Gallo v. Acuna, 14 Cal.4th 1090, 1144 (Cal. 1997).

Additional, I revealed to very restricted individuals concerning the incidents however now anybody, my kin, mates, co-workers, and even acquaintance can simply discover out the incidents that topic me to social stigma. Even hundred years later his publication can be nonetheless out there to all the world on the web. The hurt brought on by Volokh’s publication is way better than the hurt brought on by Florida Star’s publication.

Third, Florida Star’s publication of the title of the Sufferer of a sexual assault was not supposed to trigger hurt. In contrast to Florida Star, Volokh is nicely conscious of the hurt that has triggered me and all of the protecting orders for the needs to guard my id however he refused to take motion to stop the hurt. Subsequently, Volokh’s persevering with publication of my id is meant to trigger hurt of a life time.

Fourth, B.J.F. didn’t have particular court docket orders to guard her id however I’ve a number of legitimate court docket orders to guard my id as a rape Sufferer. Volokh has no authorized authority or any proper to void these court docket orders by publishing my determine and the case info all collectively.

Fifth, “[I]n many contexts, the scope and software of the state constitutional proper of privateness is broader and extra protecting of privateness than the federal constitutional proper of privateness as interpreted by the federal courts. [Citations.]” American Academy of PediaIrics v. Lungren (1997) 16 Cal.4th 307, 326-327. Even within the context of prevention of secrecy in authorities, “the general public curiosity in defending the privateness of noise complainants and in stopping a chilling impact on complaints, clearly outweighs the general public curiosity in disclosure of complainants’ names…” Metropolis of San Jose v. Superior Courtroom, Santa Clara, 74 Cal.App.4th 1008, 1012 (Cal. Ct. App. 1999). Volokh’s publication of my id is a rape of my proper to privateness.

In Melvin v. Reid, 112 Cal.App. 285 (Cal. Ct. App. 1931), the defendants made a movement image of the early lifetime of the plaintiff, who had been acquitted in a infamous homicide case. It in truth depicted her as a prostitute at the moment, and used her true maiden title; all details had been drawn from the general public report. The court docket held that whereas the details of her prior life weren’t non-public, using her title was actionable. The court docket reasoned that the publication by respondents of the unsavory incidents previously lifetime of appellant after she had reformed, coupled together with her true title, was not justified by any normal of morals or ethics identified to us and was a direct invasion of her inalienable proper assured to her by our Structure, to pursue and procure happiness. Id. at 292. See additionally Varo v. L. A. Cnty. Dist. Legal professional’s Workplace, 473 F. Supp. 3d 1066 (C.D. Cal. 2019) (Holding the county violated the victims’ constitutional proper to informational privateness by disclosing their info to the perpetrator, who subsequently threatened and shot one of many sufferer’s members of the family.) …

The true menace and hazard from haters is unpredictable. It’s a lot worse than the violence instantly from Volokh. If the violence is solely and instantly from Volokh at the least I understand how to arrange myself. However it’s inconceivable for me to arrange for the menace and violence from continuingly rising haters. As an example, A, B, and C learn Volokh’s publication this month, however subsequent month D, E, and F will learn Volokh’s publication. Every day and every month there can be new readers/haters to learn Volokh’s publication. Even I alter my cellphone quantity and residence this month to keep away from the threats and violence from A, B, and C, I can’t preserve altering cellphone quantity and residence subsequent month to keep away from the threats and violence from D, E, and F. And this can proceed for the remainder of my life. It’s inconceivable to arrange for the threats and violence after I have no idea when, the place, and from which haters….

Regardless that I preserve my cellphone off more often than not I nonetheless proceed to obtain threatening cellphone calls as soon as I tum on my cellphone and I additionally obtain harassing voice mails. On the finish of July 2022 I used to be pressured to maneuver out of my prior residence for security concern. Nevertheless, I don’t know the way lengthy this may preserve me secure.

In a response to my anti-SLAPP movement, Doe added:


Free speech concerns needs to be related to the underlying goal of constitutional governance. When deciding tough circumstances involving competing rights, judges ought to look at (1) whether or not unencumbered expression is prone to trigger constitutional, statutory, or widespread legislation harms; (2) whether or not the restricted expression has been traditionally or historically protected; (3) whether or not a authorities coverage designed to profit the overall welfare weighs in favor of the regulation; (4) the match between the disputed speech regulation and the general public finish; and (5) whether or not some much less restrictive various exists for reaching it.

Each Florida Star v. B.J.F. (1989) 491 U.S. 524 and Cox Broadcasting Corp. v. Cohn, 420 U.S. 469 (1975) selected to take a slender view and restricted their holdings. Importantly, the Supreme Courtroom expressly refused to deal with the broader query of whether or not the truthful publication of details obtained from public data can ever be subjected to civil or prison legal responsibility. Cox Broadcasting Corp. v. Cohn, 420 U.S. 469, 491 (1975). The controlling case just isn’t Cox Broadcasting, however Smith v. Each day Mail Publishing Co., 443 U.S. 97 (1979). The Courtroom concluded that the proper rule, formulated in Each day Mail, is that “[[i]]f a newspaper lawfully obtains truthful details about a matter of public significance then state officers could not constitutionally punish publication of the data, absent a have to additional a state curiosity of the very best order.” Florida Star v. B.J.F. (1989) 491 U.S. 524, 533. The Each day Mail formulation displays the truth that it’s a restricted set of circumstances certainly the place, regardless of the accessibility of the general public to sure info, a significant public curiosity is served by limiting its additional launch by different entities, just like the press. Id. 535. The moment case falls inside that restricted set of circumstances.

It’s undisputed that Petitioner just isn’t a star that may draw public consideration. Initially there was no undesired publicity of her till Volokh’s large on-line publication. Volokh doesn’t rigorously choose his viewers or readers and his publication is obtainable indefinitely to all the world. Volokh’s large publication serves the aim of incitement to entice haters to stalk, harass, threaten, and commit violence towards Petitioner. It’s also undisputed that there isn’t any different particular person or entity that pulls pointless public consideration to Petitioner as Volokh does. Social welfare generally trumps private want, permitting for legal guidelines towards incitement, combating phrases, antitrust rules, patents, and different forms of restraints that don’t implicate core constitutional considerations.

The aid sought by Petitioner furthers at the least three intently associated pursuits: the precise to be free from unwarranted and undesired publicity and the precise to be free from harassment and violence of victims of sexual offenses; the bodily security of such victims, who could also be focused by haters; and the purpose of encouraging victims of such crimes to report these offenses with out concern of pointless publicity.

Volokh has identified very nicely what the results of his large publication could be. It was eminently foreseeable given his expertise as he cited Florida Star v. B.J.F. (1989) 491 U.S. 524….


This court docket should stability the non-public and societal curiosity in Volokh’ speech towards any competing constitutional considerations that may be implicated. See, e.g., Robins v. Pruneyard Buying Middle (1979) 23 Cal.3d 899, 910-911 [balancing signature gatherers’ “wish to disseminate ideas” with concern “that these activities do not interfere with normal business operations” and “property or privacy rights” of occupants and owners.]

The Supreme Courtroom’s use of a balancing take a look at to resolve conflicting press and privateness pursuits was restated by Justice Rehnquist within the Each day Mail case:

Traditionally, we’ve got seen freedom of speech and of the press as indispensable to a free society and its authorities. However recognition of this proposition has not meant that the general public curiosity in free speech and press at all times has prevailed over competing pursuits of the general public. “Freedom of speech thus doesn’t comprehend the precise to talk on any topic at any time,” [Citation], and “the press just isn’t free to publish with impunity every part and something it wishes to publish.” [Citation]. Whereas we’ve got proven a particular solicitude for freedom of speech and of the press, we’ve got eschewed absolutes in favor of a extra delicate calculus that rigorously weighs the conflicting pursuits to find out which calls for the better safety below the actual circumstances offered. [Citation]

The aid Petitioner seeks has little or minimal affect on Volokh’s speech. Nevertheless, on account of Volokh’s persevering with large publication, Petitioner has been pressured to endure malicious and merciless abuse by the hands of ruthless and unscrupulous individuals. Frequently, Petitioner has confronted harassment, verbal assault, stalking, demise threats, fixed concern and extra. Below the actual circumstances offered right here Petitioner deserves better safety….

And she or he sought the next order:

Attachment 8C—Different Private Conduct Orders

The impact of the next ban on Eugene Voloky’s [sic] speech is minimal. Individuals ex rel. Gallo v. Acuna, 14 Cal.4th 1090, 1121 (Cal. 1997). The ban on his speech prices him nothing however his speech prices me lifetime well being and security.

I ask the court docket to order Eugene Volokh to do any of the next issues:

  • Take away any remarks, feedback‚ or references from any publicly out there paperwork or articles authored by Eugene Voloky that join Protected Social gathering’s actual title with rape or sexual assault;
  • Take away any remarks, feedback, or references from any publicly out there paperwork or articles authored by Eugene Voloky that join the Protected Social gathering’s actual title with the circumstances wherein she has acquired a protecting order to proceed below a pseudonym;
  • Stop publishing any remarks, feedback, or references that join the Protected Social gathering with rape or sexual assault;
  • Stop drawing public consideration to the Protected Social gathering’s actual title related to rape or sexually assault.

I responded with the next response and anti-SLAPP movement, which the Courtroom simply granted this morning. (I additionally moved to oppose Doe’s try and proceed pseudonymously; that can be heard Oct. 25, however as a result of that movement is pending, I don’t point out Doe’s title within the excerpts beneath, although I don’t imagine I’m legally forbidden from doing so.)

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You’ll notice that the movement predominantly focuses on why I’m legally entitled to publish this materials even when a tiny fraction of my readers acted illegally due to what they learn. However I also needs to notice that I’m skeptical that any of the calls that Doe acquired really stemmed from my legislation assessment article (the one place I discussed her full title) or from my weblog posts (the place I discussed her final title, which seems to be a reasonably widespread Chinese language title). Doe could nicely have enemies from varied sources, together with her previous lawsuits. However I’ve no motive to imagine that any enemies emerged from, or had been enabled by, my legislation assessment article and my weblog posts.

Notice additionally that Doe’s petition just isn’t exact on which of my writings she was involved about, and an earlier, procedurally unsuccessful try on her half to get such an order appeared to focus simply on the article; however I assumed that she was additionally discussing my weblog posts (since I didn’t need to be accused of understating in my movement my previous references to her). And, lastly, many due to Ken White (@PopeHat), who took the time to speak to me about this matter and provide me his sage counsel.

Right here’s my movement:

Petitioner Jane Doe—a frequent unsuccessful litigant—is asking this Courtroom to impose unconstitutional prior restraint to stop a legislation professor from writing about necessary, publicly out there circumstances about pseudonymity. That demand is meritless, and this Courtroom ought to grant Prof. Volokh’s anti-SLAPP movement to strike it. Within the various, this Courtroom ought to deal with this Movement and the proof herein as Prof. Volokh’s opposition to the Petition and, on these grounds, deny the Petition….

[I.] Introduction

Eugene Volokh is a legislation professor who has lately been writing about pseudonymous litigation, together with in (1) the legislation journal article The Regulation of Pseudonymous Litigation (2022) 73 Hastings L.J. 1353 …, and (2) many weblog posts …. Jane Doe is a frequent pseudonymous litigator …. [Details omitted. -EV] Naturally, Volokh discovered [some of Doe’s past cases] and Jane Doe’s litigation habits extra broadly to be related to his analysis…. He … talked about Doe by her full title … in his Hastings article, and by her final title in three weblog posts …. That is clearly constitutionally protected, and is akin to what students and reporters usually publish.

Now Doe is attempting to abuse the § 527.6 harassment restraining order course of to suppress Volokh’s constitutionally protected writings. That’s unauthorized by § 527.6 and forbidden by the First Modification. Doe’s petition relies fully on Volokh’s constitutionally protected speech—which is equal for First Modification functions to a Los Angeles Occasions article that mentions somebody’s title. And Doe additionally seeks an injunction requiring the elimination of constitutionally protected speech, and forbidding future situations of constitutional protected speech.

None of Volokh’s writings entails any menace of violence by Volokh. Doe’s declare is that she believes, with no proof, that two individuals made harassing calls to her after studying Volokh’s work. However that can’t justify limiting speech, any greater than this Courtroom might order the Occasions to take down an article that has triggered some readers to react with hostility to an individual talked about within the article….

[II.] Argument

[A.] The Anti-SLAPP statute, § 425.16, applies to this continuing

This Courtroom ought to strike Doe’s grievance below the anti-SLAPP statute (Cal.Code Civ.Proc. § 425.16). The anti-SLAPP statute applies to § 527.6 petitions (apart from purely interim TROs) in addition to to different civil circumstances. (See Huntingdon Life Scis., Inc. v. Cease Huntingdon Animal Cruelty USA, Inc. (2005) 129 Cal.App.4th 1228, 1239; Thomas v. Quintero (2005) 126 Cal.App.4th 635, 641-42.) …

Part 425.16 requires “a two-step course of for figuring out whether or not an motion is a SLAPP” (Navellier v. Sletten (2002) 29 Cal.4th 82, 88), and thus whether or not the motion should be struck:

  1. First step: “First, the court docket decides whether or not the defendant has made a threshold exhibiting that the challenged reason behind motion is one arising from protected exercise. ‘A defendant meets this burden by demonstrating that the act underlying the plaintiffs trigger suits one of many classes spelled out in part 425.16, subdivision (e).’”
  2. Second step: “If the court docket finds that such a exhibiting has been made, it should then decide whether or not the plaintiff has demonstrated a likelihood of prevailing on the declare.”

“[P]laintiffs’ burden as to the second prong of the anti-SLAPP take a look at is akin to that of a celebration opposing a movement for abstract judgment.” Navellier v. Sletten (2003) 106 Cal. App. 4th 763, 768. “In opposing an anti-SLAPP movement, the plaintiff can’t depend on the allegations of the grievance, however should produce proof that may be admissible at trial.” (HMS Capital, Inc. v. Attorneys Title Co. (2004) 118 Cal.App.4th 204, 212.)

Volokh’s writings are lined by § 425.16 below step one, as a result of they represent “act[s]” “in furtherance of” Volokh’s “proper of … free speech,” below three separate clauses:

  1. They’re “writing[s] made in reference to a problem into account or assessment by a legislative, government, or judicial physique” (§ 425.16(e)(2)).
  2. They’re “writing[s] made in a spot open to the general public or a public discussion board in reference to a problem of public curiosity” (§ 425.16(e)(3)).
  3. They’re “conduct in furtherance of the train of … the constitutional proper of free speech in reference to a public problem or a problem of public curiosity” (§ 425.16(e)(4)).

And since Volokh’s articles are constitutionally protected, and in any occasion not lined by § 527.6, Doe can’t carry her step-two burden of exhibiting “a likelihood that [she] will prevail on the declare” (§ 425.16(b)(1)).

[A.] The first step: Volokh’s articles are presumptively protected by § 425.16

California “courts have repeatedly held that experiences of judicial proceedings,” together with on a “Website,” “are an train of free speech inside the which means of part 425.16.” (Conventional Cat Assn., Inc. v. Gilbreath (2004) 118 Cal.App.4th 392, 397.) It is because publications about proceedings earlier than authorities our bodies represent “writing[s] made in reference to a problem into account or assessment by a legislative, government, or judicial physique” (§ 425.16(e)(2)). Thus, for instance,

  • An article reporting on “statements made throughout deposition or … at [a] custody trial” is roofed by § 425.16 (Sipple v. Discovered. for Nat. Progress (1999) 71 Cal.App.4th 226, 238).
  • Articles a few dispute amongst property homeowners “and the associated hearings held by the … Board of Supervisors …, the county’s enforcement motion, and [the] responsive federal go well with” are lined by § 425.16, as a result of they’re “clearly united by dependence on or relation to the official government, legislative, and judicial actions they described.” (Lafayette Morehouse, Inc. v. Chron. Publ’g Co. (1995) 37 Cal.App.4th 855, 863, outdated by statute on different grounds, Damon v. Ocean Hills Journalism Membership (2000) 85 Cal.App.4th 468, 478.)
  • Articles reporting on an government department audit of a personal entity are “in reference to a problem being reviewed by an official continuing” and thus lined by § 425.16. (Braun v. Chron. Publ’g Co. (1997) 52 Cal.App.4th 1036, 1047 [cited approvingly in Briggs v. Eden Council for Hope & Opportunity (1999) 19 Cal.4th 1106, 1116-17].)

And as soon as a defendant exhibits that the reason for motion arises from such “writing[s] made in reference to a problem below” governmental consideration, there isn’t any want for a plaintiff to fulfill “any separate ‘public problem’ requirement.” (Briggs, supra, 19 Cal.4th at 1113.)

Likewise, Volokh’s Hastings Regulation Journalarticle—which experiences on what has occurred in tons of of circumstances, together with [Doe’s case]—is “in reference to a problem into account or assessment by a … judicial physique,” as are Volokh’s weblog posts that point out [Doe’s case] and comparable circumstances. Certainly, [Doe’s case] stays “into account or assessment” each by the District of Colorado and, as to the pseudonymity query, by the Tenth Circuit.

Volokh’s weblog posts and legislation assessment articles are additionally lined by § 425.16(e)(3) [and § 425.16(e)(4)]. [Details omitted. -EV]

Naturally, whereas discussing this public problem, Volokh’s writings point out each the holdings of the circumstances and the identities of particular litigants whose actions led to these choices. However that’s an inherent characteristic of a wealthy, detailed dialogue of a matter, simply as a newspaper article a few lawsuit would naturally embody correct reporting on who was concerned within the lawsuit.

[B.] Step two: Doe can’t “set up[]” “a likelihood that [she] will prevail on the declare”

[1.] Volokh’s writings are protected by the First Modification, and thus can’t be enjoined or kind the idea for a § 527.6 injunction

Volokh’s writings cowl public report details about Doe’s lawsuits, and are thus protected by the First Modification. “‘[T]he States could not impose sanctions on the publication of truthful info contained in official court docket data open to public inspection.’” (Gates v. Discovery Commc’ns, Inc. (2004) 34 Cal.4th 679, 688 (quoting Cox Broadcasting Corp. v. Cohn (1975) 420 U.S. 469, 495.) This extends to rape victims’ names, once they seem in government-provided paperwork. (Florida Star v. B.J.F. (1989) 491 U.S. 524, 526.) And it applies to reporting each of long-past proceedings and of “present judicial proceedings” (Gates, supra, 34 Cal.3d at 695 (cleaned up)) …. Decide Bradley S. Phillips thus appropriately refused to grant a brief order in Doe’s earlier, abortive petition towards Volokh, writing, “The alleged conduct of the particular person in (2) is probably going protected free speech below the First Modification.” (Discover of Courtroom Listening to, Voloky, supra, at 2.)

Nor can this proper be overcome by claims of “privateness”: “[A]n invasion of privateness declare primarily based on allegations of hurt brought on by a media defendant’s publication of details obtained from public official data of a prison continuing is barred by the First Modification.” (Gates, supra, 34 Cal.3d at 696.) Volokh is a media defendant, as famous in Half I; however in any occasion, the First Modification equally protects media and nonmedia audio system. (See, e.g., Bartnicki v. Vopper (2001) 532 U.S. 514, 525 n.8 [rejecting media/‌nonmedia distinction in invasion of privacy case]; Miller v. Nestande (1987) 192 Cal.App.3d 191, 200 n.7 [likewise, in a libel case]; Obsidian Finance Group, LLC v. Cox (ninth Cir. 2014) 740 F.3d 1284, 1291 [likewise; “a First Amendment distinction between the institutional press and other speakers is unworkable”].)

Certainly, Gates expressly overruled the opposite reasoning in a number one earlier invasion of privateness case, Briscoe v. Reader’s Digest Ass’n, Inc. (1971) 4 Cal.3d 529. (Gates, supra, at 697, fn. 9.) And it thus implicitly overruled Melvin v. Reid (1931) 112 Cal.App. 285, on which Briscoe had relied (4 Cal.3d at 534), and on which Doe depends, Declaration of Jane Doe [Doe Decl.] at 3-4. (See additionally Catlett v. Teel (Wash.Ct.App. 2020) 477 P.3d 50, 53 [setting aside an “antiharassment protection order” because it imposed “an unconstitutional content-based restriction” on the respondent’s speech and “an unconstitutional prior restraint,” to the extent that it covered respondent’s publishing material drawn from “public records”].)

Doe alleges that she has “a number of legitimate court docket orders to guard [her] id as a rape sufferer,” and that “Volokh has no authorized authority or any proper to void these court docket orders by publishing my id and the case info all collectively.” Doe Decl. at 3. Presumably she is referring to the truth that, in a number of the circumstances wherein she participated, the court docket had allowed her to take part pseudonymously. However Volokh is unaware of any pseudonymity orders in any of the circumstances cited above that even purport to bind third events like him.

Certainly, even when the protecting orders in different circumstances did search to bind third events, they might not achieve this. “Each [i]njunction and [r]estraining [o]rder” “binds solely” “the events” and their brokers and others “who’re in lively live performance or participation” with them. (Fed. R. Civ. P. 65(d).) The identical is true for protecting orders—”a protecting order typically doesn’t bind a non-party,” at the least except “the non-party … agree[d] to be certain by the order.” (State ex rel. Thomas v. Grant (Ariz.Ct.App. 2009) 213 P.3d 346, 347, 350 [expressly rejecting the view that “a non-party that comes into possession of information it knows is covered by a protective order is bound by the order not to disseminate the information just as a party to the litigation would be bound”].)

A court docket order can’t “forestall [the media] … or anybody else from disseminating the substance of data already within the public area.” Tavoulareas v. Washington Publish Co. (D.D.C. 1986) 111 F.R.D. 653, 660. Certainly, even a get together “could disseminate the similar info lined by the protecting order so long as the data is gained by means impartial of the court docket’s processes.” Seattle Occasions Co. v. Rhinehart (1984) 467 U.S. 20, 34. It’s even clearer that Volokh—a non-party to these circumstances—could freely use details about the plaintiff’s id that he obtained from the general public data in different circumstances. A protecting order should “not prohibit the dissemination of data obtained from different sources.” Anderson v. Cryovac, Inc. (1st Cir. 1986) 805 F.2nd 1, 14.

Doe additionally in passing alleges that Volokh “portrays [her] in a false gentle,” as a result of “[h]e states that [Doe] was convicted of a number of crimes however he leaves out the truth that [Doe is] presently searching for post-conviction aid resulting from wrongful conviction” (Doe Decl. at 1). In fact individuals convicted of crimes are free to assert they had been harmless, and are free to hunt post-conviction aid so arguing, even after their convictions have been affirmed on enchantment. However there isn’t any authorized precept requiring somebody who mentions a conviction to additionally point out that it’s being challenged in a state or federal habeas continuing.

Likewise, Doe states that Volokh “alleges that [she] had made comparable rape accusations towards different individuals which once more portrays me in a false gentle” (Doe Decl. at 1). However public report paperwork do recommend that it certainly “seems that [Doe] had made comparable accusations,” Volokh, supra, 73 Hastings L.J. at 1370, see Doe v. Newsom (C.D.Cal. Mar. 26, 2021) No. 2:20-cv-04525, at *2 (discussing such accusations); Volokh, supra, 1370 fn. 75 (citing sources indicating that the plaintiff in Doe v. Newsom is the Doe on this case). And in any occasion, the harassment restraining order course of just isn’t supposed to be a treatment for allegations of remoted assertions that place somebody in a false gentle.

[2.] Volokh’s writings don’t lose their First Modification safety merely primarily based on hypothesis that some readers acted improperly after having learn the writings

A author’s First Modification rights don’t disappear even when (as Doe alleges) two readers react to revealed materials with harassment and even threats or violence—or else any newspaper article that casts an individual in a damaging gentle must be eliminated if a number of individuals get indignant sufficient because of this. Certainly, even when a movie results in outright violence, it can’t be topic even to after-the-fact civil legal responsibility (and subsequently, nonetheless extra clearly, can’t have its continued exhibiting be enjoined):

[W]hen speech … arouse[s] violent response on the a part of the lawless, the primary obligation of presidency is to take care of the peace and implement the legislation, and to not silence or punish the speaker. Have been this not the rule, all speech could be topic to the “heckler’s veto.” … [T]listed below are individuals who will react violently to motion pictures, or different types of expression, which offend them, whether or not the subject material be gangs, race relations, or the Vietnam battle. It could, in reality, be tough to foretell what explicit expression will trigger such a response, and below what circumstances. To impose upon the producers of a movement image the form of legal responsibility for which plaintiffs contend on this case would, to a big diploma, allow such individuals to dictate, in impact, what’s proven within the theaters of our land. (Invoice v. Superior Ct. (1982) 137 Cal.App.3d 1002, 1008-09 [citation omitted].)

(See additionally McCollum v. CBS, Inc. (1988) 202 Cal.App.3d 989, 1002 [holding likewise as to a lawsuit based on music by Ozzy Osbourne that allegedly led to a 19-year-old listener’s suicide].) What’s true of movies is equally true of legislation assessment articles and articles on journal web pages.

To make sure, speech that tends to trigger unlawful conduct can certainly be punished if it suits inside the slender exception for “incitement” (Invoice, supra, at 1006-07; McCollum, supra, at 1000). However that requires a exhibiting that the speech constituted “advocacy of using pressure or of legislation violation” and was “directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless motion” and was “prone to incite or produce such motion.” (Brandenburg v. Ohio (1969) 395 U.S. 444, 447; NAACP v. Claiborne {Hardware} Co. (1982) 458 U.S. 886, 927-28 [applying Brandenburg as a limit on civil liability, where it was alleged that some listeners criminally attacked people who had been denounced in speech distributed by the NAACP].) Volokh’s writings didn’t advocate lawless motion; they weren’t directed to producing such motion; they weren’t directed to producing imminent lawless motion; and so they weren’t prone to produce such imminent lawless motion. (Doe merely speculates that the 2 calls she acquired had been prompted by the callers’ studying Volokh’s legislation assessment article—the one publication that mentions her full title; and definitely there was no motive to assume, when the Hastings Regulation Journal article was revealed, that such calls had been prone to be imminently brought on by that publication.)

[3.] Volokh’s articles are usually not “harassment” below § 527.6

Doe thus has no chance of succeeding on her § 527.6 declare, and thus can’t fulfill her second-step burden below § 425.16, as a result of Volokh’s writings are categorically protected by the First Modification. And Doe additionally can’t fulfill her burden as a result of Volokh’s writings are categorically excluded from the statutory definition of “harassment” in § 527.6(b) (emphasis added):

(1) “Course of conduct” is a sample of conduct composed of a collection of acts over a time frame, nonetheless brief, evidencing a continuity of goal … . Constitutionally protected exercise just isn’t included inside the which means of “course of conduct.”

(3) “Harassment” is illegal violence, a reputable menace of violence, or a figuring out and willful course of conduct directed at a selected individual that critically alarms, annoys, or harasses the particular person, and that serves no professional goal. The course of conduct should be that which might trigger a affordable particular person to endure substantial emotional misery, and should really trigger substantial emotional misery to the petitioner.

That is so for 4 causes:

  1. “Constitutionally protected exercise just isn’t included inside the which means of ‘course of conduct’”; as defined above, Volokh’s article and posts had been constitutionally protected.
  2. Volokh’s writings weren’t “directed at” Doe; they merely talked about her title as one a part of their protection of the legislation of pseudonymous litigation. The article and two posts males­tioned Doe and her circumstances solely by the way; the remaining submit centered on [one of Doe’s cases], however talked about Doe’s final title solely as a part of a protracted submit that consisted principally of excerpts from the case.
  3. The writings served the eminently “professional goal” of discussing circumstances on pseudonymous litigation, and the actual litigation habits that led to the choices in these circumstances.
  4. Volokh’s personal “course of conduct”—publishing a legislation journal article and three weblog posts—wouldn’t “trigger an affordable particular person to endure substantial emotional misery.” If Doe acquired harassing cellphone calls, these callers’ conduct would possibly trigger an affordable particular person substantial emotional misery. However the calls weren’t a part of Volokh’s personal “course of conduct”: they got here from utterly completely different individuals whose identities are unknown to Volokh, and their “goal” was fully completely different from Volokh’s goal of discussing the legislation of pseudonymous litigation. Definitely Doe can level to no “clear and convincing proof” (527.6(i)) that there was any “continuity of goal” between Volokh’s writings and the harassing cellphone calls.

[4.] Doe’s petition seeks an unconstitutional prior restraint

Doe’s petition should thus be struck below § 425.16 even other than the unconstitutional treatments she seeks, as a result of Volokh’s writings can’t kind the idea of any § 527.6 order. However Doe’s requested treatments spotlight the unsoundness of her place. Doe asks (Petition att. 8c) for an order that Volokh

  • Take away any remarks, feedback‚ or references from any publicly out there paperwork or articles authored by Eugene Voloky [sic] that join Protected Social gathering’s actual title with rape or sexual assault;
  • Take away any remarks, feedback, or references from any publicly out there paperwork or articles authored by Eugene Voloky that join the Protected Social gathering’s actual title with the circumstances wherein she has acquired a protecting order to proceed below a pseudonym;
  • Stop publishing any remarks, feedback, or references that join the Protected Social gathering with rape or sexual assault;
  • Stop drawing public consideration to the Protected Social gathering’s actual title related to rape or sexual[] assault.

This is able to imply that Volokh could be barred from, for example, discussing or excerpting the federal District Courtroom opinion in [Doe’s case], supra, which mentioned Doe’s allegations of sexual assault, defined why the Courtroom had depseudonymized the case, and talked about Doe’s full title. That case can be now on enchantment to the Tenth Circuit, supra p. 3; if the Tenth Circuit affirms, and discusses the underlying details, then Volokh could be barred from discussing that appellate opinion—certainly, even whether it is revealed and turns into binding precedent. Likewise, Volokh could be barred from posting his varied filings in that case (the place he’s collaborating as intervenor), or his filings on this case.

This is able to be clearly unconstitutional when utilized to anybody. However it might be particularly improper to bar a legislation professor who specializes within the legislation of pseudonymity from discussing the main points of necessary circumstances that contain the legislation of pseudonymity.

California legislation acknowledges that overbroad injunctions are unconstitutional even in circumstances alleging “harassment.” (See, e.g., Evans v. Evans (2008) 162 Cal.App.4th 1157, 1164, 1169 [holding that “the court’s preliminary injunction prohibiting [defendant] Linda from publishing any ‘false and defamatory’ statements on the Web is constitutionally invalid,” even when the court docket’s rationale was a discovering of “ongoing harassment actions” by defendant; “[b]ecause there was no trial and no dedication on the deserves that any assertion made by Linda was defamatory, the court docket can’t prohibit her from making statements characterised solely as ‘false and defamatory’”). And whereas California courts have allowed injunctions after a trial at which the enjoined speech has been discovered to be constitutionally unprotected—”as soon as a court docket has discovered {that a} particular sample of speech is illegal, an injunctive order prohibiting the repetition, perpetuation, or continuation of that follow just isn’t a prohibited ‘prior restraint’ of speech” (Aguilar v. Avis Lease A Automobile Sys., Inc (1999) 21 Cal.4th 121, 140)—for the explanations given in Half II.B.1, there will be nothing “illegal” about reporting on the contents of public data.


A Harassment Restraining Order can’t constitutionally—or constantly with § 527.6—be primarily based on a legislation assessment article and weblog posts that merely report info from judicial data. Below § 425.16, Volokh is entitled to have Doe’s petition struck. Alternatively, the Courtroom ought to deny Doe’s petition primarily based on the details and authorities given above.