Journalists plan to sue Hewlett-Packard over spying
Damon Darlin of the New York Times writes Monday that three CNET business journalists who were spied on by computer maker Hewlett-Packard to determine leaks from its board plan to sue the company for invasion of privacy.
Darlin wrote, “While the dispute revolves around the issue of how the journalistsâ€™ careers may have been damaged by having their phone records examined, the threat to sue also raises the question whether it is proper for a news organization or its reporters to sue a company they cover. It is certainly not common.
“‘We are preparing to file a lawsuit,’ said Kevin R. Boyle, a lawyer in the Los Angeles firm of Panish, Shea & Boyle, which was hired by three reporters for CNet Networks, an online technology news service, Dawn Kawamoto, Stephen Shankland and Tom Krazit.
“CNet does not plan to join their lawsuit, but said that it might sue separately.
“Mr. Boyle said the suit would not ask for a dollar amount of damages but would seek punitive damages against Hewlett-Packard, the worldâ€™s largest computer company, which admitted acquiring the records through subterfuge, a practice called pretexting. Mr. Boyle said that while his clients are still employed by CNet, they are no longer allowed to cover Hewlett-Packard.”
Read more here. Reporters from BusinessWeek and the New York Times are negotiating separately with the company. Reporters from The Wall Street Journal declined to seek any compensation.