At the end of January, we brought you a detailed report on a lawsuit filed by former prosecutor and Court TV analyst Matthew Couloute Jr., who alleged that his ex-girlfriends had taken to the internet to let loose about his alleged infidelities. His exes’ scathing words were found on LiarsCheatersRUs, a website created to “save others from the heartache” associated with a cheating significant other.
In his suit, Couloute alleged that his former girlfriends, Amanda Ryncarz and Stacey Blitsch, had caused “tortious interference with [his] prospective business relations” by virtue of their online diatribes. After all, if you Google any derivative of the man’s name, one of the first few hits that appears is his profile on the scandalous cheaters website.
All the man wanted was a clean Google search, but it looks like he’s never heard of the Streisand effect. Now, just about every piece of information about Couloute that can be found on the web relates to his lawsuit, including the latest ruling made by Judge Harold Baer….
Just in case you haven’t been following along, here’s a refresher on the female litigants involved in the case, and the LiarsCheatersRUs entry that Couloute was suing over (click to enlarge):
Another entry noted that women should “RUN FAR AWAY,” because Couloute is “an attorney, so he’s great at lying and covering it up without batting an eye.” Ouch, that’s way harsh.
So what’s the latest development in Couloute’s case? We bet he wishes Google didn’t exist right about now, because his suit got dismissed on Friday. The New York Post has the details:
In his ruling, Baer said Couloute, a former Connecticut prosecutor, had failed to show that his former girlfriends intended their poison-pen postings to hurt his budding solo law firm.
“Even though plaintiff’s reputation has suffered, I am unwilling to take the leap from generalized comments calling plaintiff a ‘liar’ and a ‘cheater’ — on a Web site called ‘liarscheatersrus’ no less — to actions directed at specific business relationships,” Baer wrote.
The judge also refused to let Couloute revise his suit — which alleged “tortious interference with business relations” — to include a charge of defamation.
Baer sided with arguments by Ryncarz, who admitted to writing about Couloute, and Blitsch, who denied posting anything, concluding that the rants were merely “hyperbolic statements of opinion.”
“The average reader would know that the comments are ‘emotionally charged rhetoric’ and the ‘opinions of disappointed lovers,’” Baer wrote.
That’s a little embarrassing for a lawyer, but to be fair, he was going up against Gloria Allred and all of her feminist glory. And speaking of Girl Power Gloria, the high-powered attorney is now calling the dismissal of Couloute’s case a “victory for women’s rights.” Yeah, because all women should have the right to hop online and publicly shame their exes.
Couloute has vowed to appeal, claiming that the ruling opens the door for more online bullying and harassment under the guise of opinion. What did Allred have to say about that? According to the New York Daily News, she didn’t exactly mince words: “If you are afraid that your lying and cheating might show up on the internet, don’t lie and cheat.” You go girl.
Federal Judge Says Chicks Can Slam Cheating Exes on Web; Gloria Allred Declares ‘Victory for Women’s Rights’ [LA Weekly]
Judge tosses Manhattan lawyer’s lawsuit against two exes who trashed him as a cheater online [New York Daily News]
Gals hail dismissal of ex-lover’s suit over Internet slams [New York Post]