Joseph Rakofsky is still pursuing his lawsuit against the Internet. As expected, things are not going well for him in this matter. But he wants to continue nonetheless. His lawyer is withdrawing from the case. Rakofsky is not licensed to practice law in New York, where he filed his lawsuit. So while he can represent himself pro se, Rakofsky cannot represent his corporation, which is a party to the suit.
While responding to the nonsense of Rakofsky and his almost former attorney Richard Borzouye, Eric Turkewitz writes this brilliant commentary on why he and other defendants (mostly lawyer bloggers) think it’s important to write about clowns like Rakofsky:
Mr. Rakofsky has criticized me for a blog post I made before becoming counsel, where I used colorful language to describe his conduct, as well as giving my response to being sued for the first time in my life and my responses to other legal threats I’ve received over the four years I’ve blogged on the law.
As noted above, our group of defendants is unwilling to surrender our right to speak freely about Mr. Rakofsky’s conduct at the Dontrell Deaner trial in the District of Columbia, or the expertise he claimed to have but didn’t, or his efforts to market himself as an attorney in jurisdictions where he is not licensed, or the frivolous and counter-productive nature of this suit.
Our group of defendants believe that exposing such conduct benefits the legal profession over the long term as it discourages others from acting in similar fashion, and sets us apart from the public’s deep cynicism that comes from law enforcement’s Blue Code of Silence and, to some extent, the medical profession’s White Coat of Silence.
Bringing suit against us did not magically act as a stay of constitutionally protected rights to speak freely, and in fact, has had the effect of causing the opposite to happen. Such backlash, known as the Streisand Effect, is well known in the digital world.
Most importantly, it is unclear why the plaintiffs believe that the constitutionally protected opinions I expressed on this subject would be relevant in any way to the motion for the relief requested herein.
By the way… I do love the settlement proposal that Marc Randazza put forth to Joseph Rakofsky. (Randazza is going to represent several of the defendants, once he’s admitted pro hac vice.) In an affidavit, Randazza wrote:
My proposal was that Mr. Rakofsky would be given column space in each of the defendants’ publications, in which he would be permitted to explain his side of the underlying story, and in which he would engage in self-critique and self-reflection about the matter. Mr. Rakofsky’s name is, currently, synonymous with poor judgment, unethical conduct, and incompetence. However, it was my belief at that time that Mr. Rakofsky could be “saved,” in that he could counter the negative public attention heaped upon him after D.C. Superior Court Judge William Jackson called his competence and ethics into question. (See Transcript of Deaner Trial, Exhibit F of moving papers.) It was my belief that an act of sincere self-reflection could not only counter the negative public opinion of him, but could place him in a better position than before this entire ordeal began.
Naturally, Rakofsky declined this proposal. He wanted every defendant to remove their articles about him from the internet and issue public apologies to him, in addition to paying Rakofsky an unspecified sum of money. That’s never going to happen, and this case is only going to get worse for Rakofsky.
Rakofsky should seriously consider taking the advice of Randazza memorialized in paragraph 15 of his affidavit.