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Jack Thompson Sues Florida Bar 71

Gamasutra reports that Jack Thompson has sued the Florida Bar Association, for "hector[ing] plaintiff Thompson for 19 months with SLAPP Bar complaints filed by opposing counsel (Strategic Litigation Against Public Participants). Continually, during that time, Thompson and his counsel in these Bar matters have repeatedly asked The Florida Bar to sit down with him and his counsel to try to resolve, once and for all, this dispute, which goes back more than 18 years when other baseless SLAPP Bar complaints were filed, resulting in the payment of money damages to plaintiff Thompson."
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Jack Thompson Sues Florida Bar

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  • I find it... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ddx Christ ( 907967 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @03:53AM (#15134616) Homepage

    I find it difficult to read anything involving Jack Thompson seriously at this point. The media coverage he has gained just makes him look like the lead act in a ridiculous circus. While it may have even been funny in a stomach-turning way at one point or another, it's essentially just pathetic to see news involving him.

    I can only hope that he learns his lesson sooner or later, or at least it'll get to the point where nobody cares about Jack Thompson. At this stage in the game to say otherwise owuld be an exercise in futility.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 15, 2006 @03:55AM (#15134621)
    I personally know someone who filed one of those 19 complaints and I can tell you they had nothing to do with "opposing counsel" of any law case at all.

    Go figure. Someone breaks the ethics rules of the Florida Bar. A number of people nationwide respond by filing complaints with the Florida Bar noting these breaches of ethics rules. And the guy's response? Is to sue the Florida Bar for allowing people to file these complaints in the first place.

    Jack Thompson's suit is the exact sort of thing the term "SLAPP" was designed to describe in the first place. It's disgusting he is able to get away with things like this. And the worst part? In the end, he probably won't have any consequences. He'll get the publicity he craves from this spat with the Bar, but what with the pressure he's applying by gaming the system, the Bar will probably back off on actually doing anything about his ethics violations.
    • I wouldn't underestimate the veracity of the bar when it comes to ethics violations. Suing the bar isn't going to get them to back off, it's only going to make them more frustrated and willing to pursue you.
      • suing the bar.... isn't that like challenging chuck norris to a roundhouse kick dual?
        • It depends, the law could tie one of Chick Norris's legs behind his back.

          But yea, if you don't have the law backing you and tieiing the other side down, you gonna get hurt.
          • you go ahead and get into a fight with chuck norris with just one of his legs immobilized behind his back... i'll be standing behind this wall so i don't get covered in gibs.
            • I'll have to check how high i can kick first. It might be possible I would need a step ladder just to attempt to kick his ass.

              But really, both seem somewhat frightening. If the law was on my side, I don'[t think i would worry too much about going against the bar. They would have to keep thier creditability to some degree or the public would be clamering to have the system replaced or for new oversight. I guess it would be confirmation of "all lawers are crooked" if they retaliated and you were in the right.
      • Suing the bar isn't going to get them to back off, it's only going to make them more frustrated and willing to pursue you.

        This is exactly what he wants. Thompson has shown repeatedly that he cares little for the actual legal merit of anything he is involved in, and is more interested in self-important attention-whoring. Unfortunately for the legal system and the populace in general, he is a lawyer, and this allows him more and better opportunities to abuse the legal and media systems for personal gain.

  • And soon... (Score:5, Funny)

    by shut_up_man ( 450725 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @03:57AM (#15134623) Homepage
    Jack Thompson sues U.S. District Court of Southeastern Florida over Florida Bar decision? I wonder if he'll stop when he gets to suing Jesus, or whether he'll go the final step up to God...
  • by ucaledek ( 887701 )
    maybe he'll fade away. Probably not, but it's better than hearing his self-aggrandizing crusade against all things not Jack Thompson. The problem is that some news media treat him a serious player in the world, when their only proof seems to be previous news media's treatment of him as a serious player.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 15, 2006 @04:12AM (#15134655)
      He's been doing this since 1989. You just haven't heard of him until recently because before he was attacking video games, he was attacking rap music.

      17 years. And he hasn't faded away yet.

      Really, some things don't go away when you stop paying attention to them.
      • Next GTA® installment.

        Grand Theft Auto®: South Beach
        In this title you take on the persona of Jack Thompson.
        Command an army of mindless paralegals who are more than happy to carry out your bidding.
        Strong arm small software devolpment companies.
        Wrestle private citizens into finacial submission.
        Tie up legal systems for weeks, months, extra points for years with bullshit appeals.
        Win the game by ultimately running for Chief Justice.
        Score big in the bonus round for gaining popularity points via sensa
    • by Ayaress ( 662020 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @01:46PM (#15135989) Journal
      Yeah, that worked really well averting WWII and the oil crisis in the 1970's. Ignore them and they'll stop bothering us. It's a historically common way of dealing with everything from dissidents to economics, and it almost universally bites you in the ass in the end.

      So, ignore him. He's still on CNN, Fox news, whoever will listen to him on a weekly basis. The family protection groups are still throwing his name and words around - even the ones that publically renounced him a while back have made friendly again. What you have now is the same guy running unchallenged. This is the situation he had when he ruined many businesses in the porn industry. Nobody stood up to him, and the industry itself just ignored him and hoped their studio wasn't next. So a lot of people lost their businesses - some of whom hadn't actually been making pornography, but he figured it was close enough.

      Then he went after music. Ruined a few artists, got a few CD's taken off the market - to this day he loves to tell anybody who'll listen that he's the reason Ice-T's career ended so suddenly. By and large, no opposition. The artists ignored him, the labels didn't really care, and the listeners didn't even know what was going on in most cases.

      A decade running unchecked. He finally picked on an industry with a lot of fans who spend more time on their computers than anywhere else, and fighting back is easy online, so a lot of people are fighting back now.

      And what happened? He's lost cases, he's been thrown out of court, he's been made a monkey of repeatedly, and right now he's in danger of losing his ability to make legal war on the media for good.

      Just ignore him. He'll be back.
  • I mean, I think it's only fair; he is suing the Association, which they have a right to defend, right? So, lawyer battle royale?
  • Expert (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Unlikely_Hero ( 900172 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @04:24AM (#15134675)
    These days it seems the only difference between a layman and an expert is the title...
  • dumb or smart? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Tom ( 822 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @04:56AM (#15134725) Homepage Journal
    For some reason, it strikes me as extraordinarily stupid to bite the hand that feeds ... sorry, sue the bar that allows you to practice.

    Then again, SCO shows us how what appears to be stupid on the surface can really be an extremely smart exploitation of the legal system for personal gains.

    So, let's follow the money - what's Jack's potential profit here? More publicity?
    • This guy loves to feel important so he kicks up as much dirt as possible. I would agree that he does it only for money, but really, where do you make crap like this up? I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if he really believes himself to be the beacon of light, savior for immoral humanity. Slashdot really needs some better methods to filter posts (maybe use tags?).
  • ...You really are an asshole that drags down the entire profession.You should be disbarred. You represent everything that is wrong with being a lawyer.
  • A Reminder (Score:5, Funny)

    by Kennego ( 963972 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @05:48AM (#15134794)
    Jack Thompson's behavior is easier to understand if you remember his origins []
    • I loved the "PONG - San Andreas" crack ;).

      I wonder if you could make a hack for GTASA that would allow you to use superball launcher as a weapon ?-) Obviously, those things would bounce off everything :)...

    • ...that cartoon's just simply...WRONG...on so many levels.

      And funny as all get out, considering Jack's past and recent conduct...
  • Diddums (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Armchair Dissident ( 557503 ) * on Saturday April 15, 2006 @05:49AM (#15134795) Homepage
    claiming one million dollars in damages, based on what he claims are vindictive complaints filed against him by other lawyers

    And encouraging families to sue game makers is not vindictive?! The man has been abusing the legal system filing frivolous complaints against game makers for years.
  • In an ideal world layers would spend all day happily suing each other and leave the rest of us to get on with life.
  • Cum granum salis (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Julian Morrison ( 5575 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @06:10AM (#15134818)
    You know, there ought to be some status in law, where a person's opinion is no longer regarded as more meaningful than purely entropic noise. Lets call it cum granum salis. A person having this status could neither be sole plaintiff nor sole witness in a legal case. If they wanted to bring suit, they'd have to have a guarantor willing to swear to their truthfulness - who would risk having their own opinions taken cum granum salis if the case were subsequently thrown out for lack of merit.

    The first recipients should probably be Jack Thompson, and SCO.
    • You know, there ought to be some status in law, where a person's opinion is no longer regarded as more meaningful than purely entropic noise.

      For starters, you have the PATRIOT Act.

    • Re:Cum granum salis (Score:3, Informative)

      by belmolis ( 702863 )

      That would be cum grano salis. cum takes the ablative case, not the accusative.

    • Re:Cum granum salis (Score:5, Informative)

      by meringuoid ( 568297 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @06:52AM (#15134890)
      You know, there ought to be some status in law, where a person's opinion is no longer regarded as more meaningful than purely entropic noise. Lets call it cum granum salis. A person having this status could neither be sole plaintiff nor sole witness in a legal case.

      Not quite the same thing, but there's a concept of the 'vexatious litigant' [] in some places. They're forbidden to sue anybody, because they've abused the courts repeatedly and egregiously. The British courts' killfile is here [], and I notice from the wikipedia link that the notorious Christian extremist Fred Phelps is listed as a vexatious litigant in the US.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 15, 2006 @06:11AM (#15134822)
    "I enjoy doing what I do and I think I've got a First Amendment right to annoy people and participate in the public square in the cultural war," Jack Thompson [].

    Explains why he keeps evading bans on Gamepolitics, and spewing his usual retarded drivel there. For someone who is "wining", he sure spends a lot of time posting and obsessing over GamePolitics. But what else can you say about someone who, among various absurd things, feels blogs are for losers(but not LiveJournal accounts to post PR pieces, trash talk, etc), whines when someone calls/mails him, and has non-existent/default "no page here yet" web sites? Guess the place holder is better then his text only Florida Bar attack site(which is now "no page here" humm....).

    You know, a bunch of people have been wondering if Jack suffers from some sort of mental disability/defect. Given how he acts like some Usenet kooks I "know"(taking things to real life, being very hypocritical in their actions, claming credit for the work of others, claiming any darned thing is a victory for them, making absurd claims, etc), I wouldn't be surprised if this is the case. HELL, this makes a lot of sense, his last issue with the Florida bar in the 90s was over their forcing him to undergo psychiatric testing!

    While he did pass and was awarded a $20,000 settlement, I have to wonder with all the advances in psychology and diagnosis of mental disabilities, if they will find something this time. And that is what I think is a good reason for his current mental breakdown, with the constant losing streak, inappropriate behavior, legal antics, and now the Florida bar, things are not looking too good for Jack despite his poker face & "I am going to win" attitude. He faces to lose a lot of creditablity, his profession, and greatly damages his "muder-sim p0rn0 games made them kill, they should be banned" cause.

    He is at the end of his wits, grasping at straws, running out of time and deep down realizes that he not going to get anywhere in terms of what he wants. Thus like kooks he takes the safe route of all talk, little to no real action.
  • Aww (Score:5, Funny)

    by idiot900 ( 166952 ) * on Saturday April 15, 2006 @07:18AM (#15134921)
    Poor defendants. I wonder where they're going to find a good lawyer.
  • What bar is he suing and why? Did he get too many drinks thrown in his face by women (or men perhaps) and is out for vengeance?
  • (Score:3, Informative)

    by EvilCabbage ( 589836 ) on Saturday April 15, 2006 @07:54AM (#15134967) Homepage
    ... I should really do something with that domain I registered :)
  • Probably related to the formal filing: Jack Thompson took down his [former] website, in which he mocked and ridiculed the Florida Bar.
  • "Jack Thompson plays videogame, sues self."
  • I mean I know some people are out to "get" him, but aren't most those people gamers who are fed up with his propaganda and FUD that does nothing but harm video games by exploiting the gullibility of 3/4 of America? I mean seriously, it is like he is saying, "The Bar is mad at me because I won, so now they are not playing fair and trying to take me down." And if that isn't bad enough he is adding to it, "It is all because those mean lawyers for the video game companies don't like me." He even lies about h
  • This guys still alive? And more importantly, why are we still discussing him like he makes some sort of difference at all? Don't feed the trolls people
    • Re:Who? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Sigma 7 ( 266129 )

      This guys still alive? And more importantly, why are we still discussing him like he makes some sort of difference at all?

      In this case, it will most likely signal the official end of his lawyer career. He's already lost credability with NIMF, and in other places. Going after the bar will make him lose credibility, period.

      While a similar lawsuit succeeded in the past, it was settled out of court since the bar wanted to protect the people making the complaints. However, I doubt there's going to be any fo

      • If this were the first time he had gone after the Florida Bar, yeah, maybe... he tried to have them declared unconstitutional back in 1992. 14 years later, he's still a litigious nutball.

  • Wouldn't doing something like this get him automatically disbarred with no appeal?
  • This isn't about frivilous complains, or about the money (only 1 million, when is the last time a lawyer only wanted 1?)

    This is 2 things.

    1: He sues the bar, and can subpeona the names of the complaint filers.

    2: He can't be debarred until the case is over, and he can strech it out a while.
  • From TFA: Thompson also notes that it is particularly video game lawyers such as Blank Rome, which represents GTA creator Take-Two, that he believes are targeting him[...]

    Jack is fighting a Take Two lawyer named Blank Rome? What, they couldn't find one named Duke Nukem to really make him mad?

  • OK, so Thompson is an idiot. Unfortunately, whenever he is mentioned the noise level rises enough that it's pretty hard to find actual analysis of his crusade du jour. Some of this probably has to do with the fact that lawsuits over video games are a recent phenomenon and this hurts the ability of those commenting on the cases. I would hope that somebody is trying to do some real analysis this time (and this case isn't necessarily about games). Anyone have links?

1 Angstrom: measure of computer anxiety = 1000 nail-bytes