Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Adventures In Lawsuit Funding: Mission Destroy Gawker

From Forbes:
This Silicon Valley Billionaire Has Been Secretly Funding Hulk Hogan's Lawsuits Against Gawker
One of Silicon Valley’s best-known investors has been footing a former wrestler’s legal bills in lawsuits against a shared enemy. 
Peter Thiel, a PayPal cofounder and one of the earliest backers of Facebook, has been secretly covering the expenses for Hulk Hogan’s lawsuits against online news organization Gawker Media. According to people familiar with the situation who agreed to speak on condition of anonymity, Thiel, a cofounder and partner at Founders Fund, has played a lead role in bankrolling the cases Terry Bollea, a.k.a. Hogan, brought against New York-based Gawker. Hogan is being represented by Charles Harder, a prominent Los Angeles-based lawyer. 
A spokesperson for Thiel declined to comment. 
The involvement of Thiel, an eccentric figure in Silicon Valley who has advocated for teenagers to skip college and openly supported Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, adds another wrinkle to a case that has garnered widespread attention for its implications over celebrity privacy and a publication’s First Amendment rights. During court proceedings, which ended in late March with a $140 million victory for Hogan, there had been rumors that a wealthy individual had funded Hogan’s case though there was never any hard evidence that surfaced to prove that was true. 
On Tuesday, in an interview with The New York Times, Gawker founder Nick Denton said he had a “personal hunch” that the financial aid could be linked to someone in Silicon Valley. “If you’re a billionaire and you don’t like the coverage of you, and you don’t particularly want to embroil yourself any further in a public scandal, it’s a pretty smart, rational thing to fund other legal cases,” he told the Times. 
It is not illegal for an outside entity to help fund another party’s lawsuit, and the practice, known as “third-party litigation funding” has become increasingly common in the U.S. Typically, the outside party negotiates for a defined share of any proceeds from the suit....MORE
In December 2007 Gawker's Valleywag posted Peter Thiel is totally gay, people.
Gawker also outed Condé Nast's CFO
Gawker's Denton is gay, not sure what he's up to.
Gawker shut down Valleywag December 31, 2015.
We stopped linking to Gawker about a year ago, today is an exception.^

Via the Florida Man feed: