A “cyberSLAPP” lawsuit is where a company files a suit just to discover the identity of their online critics – often in order to silence or intimidate them.

In a cyberSLAPP suit, the target of anonymous online criticism typically files a lawsuit against a “John Doe” defendant and then issues an identity-seeking subpoena to an ISP.

The most common complaints by cyberSLAPP plaintiffs are defamation, trademark or copyright infringement, and breach of contract.
Speech that involves a public figure – such as a corporation – is only defamatory if it is false and said with “actual malice.” It also must be factual rather than an expression of opinion.
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