Duffy v Google 2

 Why sue Google a second time?

  • In 2014 I sent yet another concerns notice to Google to remove the defamatory content that continued to be indexed on the first page of its domains. I did not receive a reply, and nothing was removed.
  • Despite the court’s decision in my favour the defamatory content remained prominently indexed online until late in 2017.
  • In October 2016, a year after I won the trial against Google, and in a final ditch attempt to get the content found to be defamatory removed, I wrote to the Chairman of Alphabet, Professor John L Hennessy with a notification that the defamatory content remained online. I had been writing to him since August 2013 and he had read every email including that notification. Further detail on the involvement of the Chairman of the Board of Alphabet in this matter and in the publication of and profit from defamtory content, abuse and hate speech is on this blog page.
  • I was subsequently given permission in the Supreme Court of South Australia to file a second case against Google, but service was to wait until after the appeal decision. 

Google’s attempts to break me

  • After I had spent upwards of $50,000 on legal costs for the second Google matter, I was forced to become self-represented – again. I had no income at all and knew that I was facing a long battle, so I had no choice.
  • Google then commenced a four-year campaign to try and bully me into going away. It wrote abusive letters dressed up as legal correspondence, filed a summary judgement application and lost (Duffy v Google LLC [2019] SASC 157), and most egregiously, Google made it clear in its defence that it was going to argue ‘truth’ dressed up as qualified privilege and once again assassinate my character. It finally withdrew that defence on the first day of the trial but that did not stop Google from trying to impute in court that I was ‘guilty’.
  • I was lucky that the presiding Justice was, once again, learned and focused on a fair trial based upon the evidence. However, the constant vicious public attacks on my character by Google and trolls over the 12 years since I first filed proceedings is soul destroying. I have spent many days waking up exhausted from the fight and the abuse.
  • I am lucky to have a small number of close friends and my involvement in dog rescue literally saved me. But this battle it is not just about me: Google destroys reputations and lives without compunction. It dresses this all up as promotion of freedom of speech but the real reason is profit.
  • Google even humiliates people seemingly for fun or retribution. After Google became aware that I had filed a second case, its legal department sent a removal notification from my known friend and cyberbullying advocate to one of its shill websites, Techdirt. The website owner, Mike Masnick, not only published it (and hence the links to false content including about his minor children) but incited commentators to abuse him. Masnick is a paid Google shill who objects to any restrictions to online speech, including those designed to address revenge porn and child sex trafficking. However, he has considerable online power because of his Google enabled rank and millions of annual visitors
  • Google used its financial resources to finance legal impediments in an attempt to force me to give up. It refused to give me discovery and I had to fight through several court battles to obtain it.
  • Google also tried to bully me into agreeing to unacceptable settlements. While I am bound by confidentially rules on the details, I can say that I hate courtrooms but I refuse to be bullied out of my rights!
  • In 2022, as the trial date approached, I was given permission by the court to include Professor Hennessy in my amended statement of claim (Duffy v Google LLC (No 2) [2022] SASC 74 at [21]).

The 2022 Google trial

  • The trial was set down for the first week of September 2022. Google used tactics that were designed to try and force me to give up. The presiding justice would not allow Google to engage in unethical tactics, bullying and humiliation. This is all a matter of written record in the trial transcript.
  • Google:
    • Dumped folders of documents on me days before commencement of the trial. His Honour delayed the start, but it was an indication of the dirty tactics that I should expect.
    • Without my permission, contacted my assisting pro bono lawyer and offered to pay him to ‘mediate’ (twist my arm). Clearly it was an attempt manipulate an unfair settlement. Luckily he has integrity.
    • Tried to humiliate me in cross examination by pushing ‘truth’ (His Honour would not permit this).
    • Used tactics such as filing subpoenas to produce in order to scare a witness whom Google had already humiliated online. I was forced to withdraw his evidence because I have integrity and would not sacrifice the well being of a person for testimony, despite the importance to my case. 
    • Threatened to drag me in front of the court in the middle of the trial and apply for costs if I did not complete a small task even though I had contracted a virus and had a medical certificate. Google knew that I was unwell because the trial had to be suspended for a few days yet it acted like a school yard bully and threatened me by email!
    • Ignored my request for a vegetarian sandwich when I agreed to attend meeting to discuss joint tender books. However, it provided requested special food for its counsel.
    • Tried to assassinate my character in verbal and written submission and imply that I was ‘guilty’ of the crimes that were the subject of the defamation and that were found to be defamatory in 2015.
  • At the trial the lawyers admitted the involvement of Professor Hennessy. He is the Chairman, he knew that Ripoff Report is an extortion racket and about the long legal process. The buck stops with him yet Professor John L Hennessy approved what can only be termed legal abuse!
  • The upshot is that Google is spending millions of dollars of shareholders money to destroy ONE person under his direction. 
  • The decision was reserved by AJ Sidney Tilmouth in the latter half of October 2022.
  • Google stated that they expected to lose and intend to take this to the High Court of Australia. 
  • To date, Google have spent several million dollars on legal costs to try and force me into withdrawing the case on their oppressive terms. I have only two choices: Capitulate and agree to their unreasonable terms or fight on. I choose the latter because my hope is that it will highlight the problem facing other Australians.
  • The impact upon my mental and physical health was and is severe. It took weeks after the trial to fully recover from a respiratory infection and it is only now, three months after the trial finished, that I have been able to focus and update this blog.