PSD Wins Dismissal in Federal Court of a Defamation Claim Against a Book Author Arising From Calling Someone “Retired,” as well as Dismissal of Claims for Violations of the Stored Communications Act, Identity Theft and Invasion of Privacy

A Federal Court in the District of New Hampshire granted a motion to dismiss brought by PSD on behalf of an author and former CEO of an international youth sports company. The plaintiff was the wife of a former CEO of the company. The wife claimed she had been defamed in a book authored by the successor CEO that referred to a character, whom she believed was based on her, as, among other things, “just retired” and “ignorant.” She also brought claims for alleged violations of the Stored Communications Act, identity theft, and an invasion of privacy. The Court held that the phrase “just retired” was not defamatory on its face and related comments appeared mere opinions, such as a sarcastic reference to the character as a “classy lady” and a statement that the character was “ignorant.” The Court rejected other claims finding that they could not by based on documents shared with a corporate Google account.

Barry Pollack and Phil Rakhunov led the PSD team winning the motion to dismiss.