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Take Two Files Suit Against Jack Thompson 99

Posted by Zonk
from the just-wow dept.
Bullied writes "Take Two has tired of Jack Thompson's frivolous lawsuits and has filed a federal lawsuit in the Southern District of Florida to prevent him from filing any more 'nuisance' lawsuits. 'Take Two argues that the lawsuits violate its First Amendment rights to free expression, but it also claims that the suits are so vague as to be unconstitutional. "This unconstitutional vagueness will have a chilling effect on Plaintiff as well as Plaintiff's customers," says the company. "Plaintiff's distributors likely will respond to the uncertainty and fear of penalties by withholding Plaintiff's video games from the public."' Take Two also cites the disruptive effect Thompson's suits have on its retail partners."
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Take Two Files Suit Against Jack Thompson

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  • What took so long? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Vengeance (46019) on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:22PM (#18377339)
    And why is it that Jack Thompson can walk down the street without everyone pointing and laughing?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Apocalypse111 (597674)
      Um, have you seen JT's litigation record?
    • Re: (Score:1, Flamebait)

      by Seumas (6865)
      Because, Jack Thompson is thinking of the children and baby jebus.

      Seriously, there are a lot of people in this world that need to die. Hopefully the universe has Jack Thompson pretty high up on that list and will take care of him karmicly sooner rather than later.
      • by The PS3 Will Fail (998952) on Friday March 16, 2007 @02:11PM (#18378063) Journal

        "Seriously, there are a lot of people in this world that need to die."
        I'm not so sure dictating who "needs" to die is very good for your karma.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Gordonjcp (186804)
        Because, Jack Thompson is thinking of the children and baby jebus.

        No he's not, he's thinking of his own ego. I can safely say that he doesn't represent *real* Christians.
        • No he's not, he's thinking of his own ego. I can safely say that he doesn't represent *real* Christians.

          Oh, how I wish that you were right, but if you'd look around you'd see that a great many Christians agree with him. It's Southern Baptists mostly, but there are "culture warriors" in most other denominations as well. They have decided that the mere existence of things that they disapprove of is intolerable, and are going to great lengths to have them eradicated. I wish more Christian sects were like t

          • by Gordonjcp (186804)
            "Southern Baptists" are not Christians. There isn't a single shred of Christianity in them.
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by kris_golden (993277)
              Ummm...except for the fact they believe in Christ...
              • by Gordonjcp (186804)
                No they don't. They believe in *saying* they believe in Christ. If they really *did* believe in Christ then they would try to live by his teachings.
                • by KDR_11k (778916)
                  Well, they believe Jesus existed. Of course so did Pilates.
                • by LingNoi (1066278)
                  The thing is that there are so many different ways to interpret the Bible that its hard to say what is or what is not his teachings and then there is always a counter point. So someone who doesn't like something can always come back at you with another quote from the Bible.

                  For example.

                  Should gay people be allowed to marry? If no, don't you think you should "Do on to others as they would to you"?

                  You see my point? If you have two Christians in the room they'll both disagree about something. So they probably a
          • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

            by Anonymous Coward
            It sounds like you don't understand the Scotsman fallacy. The reason that it is a fallacy is that being a Scotsman is all about nationality and therefore the predicate, having nothing to do with nationality, is a fallacy. On the other hand, the teachings of Christ clearly dictate that the type of judgemental attitude that Jack Thompson displays is in direct contradiction with the teachings of Christ. Having been raised as a Christian, you should know why Thompson's behavior is in contradiction to the teachi
            • by Mr2001 (90979)

              It sounds like you don't understand the Scotsman fallacy. The reason that it is a fallacy is that being a Scotsman is all about nationality and therefore the predicate, having nothing to do with nationality, is a fallacy. On the other hand, the teachings of Christ clearly dictate that the type of judgemental attitude that Jack Thompson displays is in direct contradiction with the teachings of Christ.

              The problem with this argument is "Christian" doesn't just mean someone who follows [your interpretation of] the teachings of Christ. Members of churches like the Southern Baptists are still Christians, even if outsiders think some of their beliefs contradict [the outsiders' own interpretation] of Christ's teachings.

              The argument would work if there were One True Interpretation of the Bible, but there isn't. That book is full of self-contradictions, and the reader has to ignore some parts for it to make sen

          • by Roguey (939920)

            These Christians are seemingly scarce. As are moderate atheists.

            Not really. It's just that the more extreme ones are louder.

    • Because Jack Lives in Florida... we (I being a floridian) are to ignorant and pacified by our evil opressive southern baptist regime to stand up for our selves and throw rotten tomatoes at him.

      And because he is not trying to ban beer, lotto tickets, and guns.
      • by RevAaron (125240)
        And because he is not trying to ban beer, lotto tickets, and guns. ...and thank GOD! After all, JT is just "thinking of the children," as well as being a crusader against the moral decline of the Great White US! Not only is he a godly man, he's an intelligent one- he knows that things like alcohol and guns have absolutely nothing to do with violence!
        • by suraklin (28841)
          Not only is he a godly man, he's an intelligent one- he knows that things like alcohol and guns have absolutely nothing to do with violence

          Unless they are in a video game ;)
    • Because only weirdos like us and his three-dozen rabid supporters have any idea who he is. Fewer even know what he looks like.
    • by flyingsquid (813711) on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:53PM (#18377845)
      I don't get it. Why doesn't Take Two just run him over with a stolen car?
    • by morleron (574428) *
      It's probably because he uses a Richard Nixon mask when he goes out in public. After all, no one wants to speak ill of the dead.

      Just my $.02,
      Ron
    • Because if you're the average person on the street you don't have the faintest clue who Jack Thompson is?
      • by Dogtanian (588974)

        Because if you're the average person on the street you don't have the faintest clue who Jack Thompson is?
        Bearing in mind that the guy is an attention whore whose aim seems to be to attract and exploit the attention of those ignorant of the issues (i.e. the "average" person on the street), I'd say that this is what he'd deserve.
  • Thank god (Score:2, Insightful)

    by bradsenff (1047338)
    I am happy as hell that someone finally had enough of a *real* case to smack him back.

    He filed so many crap cases, and got away with it, it is high time the tables are turned!

    -bs
  • Take Two is filing suit to ban Jack Thompson from filing suit against them?

    Is it even possible to be disallowed from filing lawsuits.

    Just wondering.
    • Re:Can they win? (Score:4, Informative)

      by tomstdenis (446163) <tomstdenisNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:32PM (#18377493) Homepage
      Likely the injunction seeks to prevent a type of lawsuit from being presented (re: the baseless kind). I imagine if Take Two broke into his home he could legally sue then.

      But, I should point out that even though [for example] you have the right of free association, that can be stripped (re: prison, restraining order, etc).

      So as punishment for filing baseless lawsuits, I can see a judge ordering that Thompson leave Take Two the fark alone.

      Tom
    • If I remember correctly, Rule 11 of the Federal Code of Civil Procedure has some sanctions that can be brought against attorneys who file frivolous suits. 'Course, CivPro was my worst class lol
    • by Quila (201335)
      Yes. It's rare, but judges have in the past enjoined people from filing suit because they've been abusing the justice system through frivolous suits. Attorney fees can also be awarded to the target of the frivolous suits.
    • Re:Can they win? (Score:4, Informative)

      by nuzak (959558) on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:51PM (#18377821) Journal
      > Is it even possible to be disallowed from filing lawsuits.

      Partly -- google for "Vexatious Litigant". Florida passed such a law to amend their rules civil procedure in 2000. http://www.ccfj.net/VexLitbill.htm [ccfj.net]

      This is a federal lawsuit though, and I'm not actually aware of any federal rules on vexatious litigation -- in fact, federal court is usually where such people go to keep filing their suits.
      • by rlp (11898)
        'vexatious litigation' - sounds like a capital crime to me. Along with 'spamming'.
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Dunbal (464142)
          Along with 'spamming'.

                What spam? There's a law against spam now - there has been for a while. You can't be receiving SPAM... it's illeagul.

                (Yes, spelling nazis, it was done on porpoise).
      • I sued Taco Bell, 'cause I ate half a million Chalupas and I got fat!
        I sued Panasonic: they never said I shouldn't use their microwave to dry off my cat.
        Huh, I sued Earthlink, 'cause I called them up n' they had the nerve to put me on hold.
        I sued Starbucks 'cause I spilled a Frappucino in my lap and brrr, it was cold!

        I sued Toys'R'Us 'cause I swallowed a Nerf ball and nearly choked to death.
        Ugh, I sued PetCo 'cause I ate a bag of kitty litter and now I got bad breath!
        I sued Coca-Cola, yo, 'cause I put my fi

  • by benfinkel (1048566) on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:32PM (#18377491)
    What are the outcome options here? Would T2's success in this suit stop JT's current lawsuits completely? Would he be able to re-file them after the games came out? Can you be liable in Civil or Criminal Court for excessive frivolous lawsuits?
    • by tomstdenis (446163) <tomstdenisNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:36PM (#18377593) Homepage
      You can get disbarred for filing falsified court documents. As for being a pain in the ass, aside from contempt I don't think so.

      In this case though Take Two is looking to enjoin him from filing lawsuits over two specific games on the basis that his previous lawsuits have all been without merit. Frankly, the guy is an assclown. He has had zero effect on the sales of the games and is making enemies all over the world. He should be proud.

      Tom
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by benfinkel (1048566)
        Falsified court documents? I didn't read anything about that, although it would seem to be well within Jack's MO. I get the funny feeling he'll file suits in other states if he gets shut down here. There's something that doesn't seem to work quite right in his brain. He's like a super-villain from a cartoon...
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by tomstdenis (446163)
          I didn't mean to say he did, I just think he's about 1 step away from doing that. He's so desperate for attention and to be "right" that I think he'll make the leap [if he hasn't already] soon enough. And yeah, I agree about the super-villain comment.

          It's funny when people like him wonder why others object to being told what they should and should not consume (media, food, whateverwise). I don't think he's clued in that just because he doesn't like something doesn't mean it should be illegal.

          Oh well. Du
      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        Frankly, the guy is an assclown. He has had zero effect on the sales of the games and is making enemies all over the world. He should be proud.

        Are you kidding? He's probably had a massively positive effect on sales. I know I got more interested in buying several games after controversy. Anything that pisses off the conservatives is all right in my book.

        Of course, the overall effect on earnings may be negative, given what it costs to go to court.

        • He's what got me interested enough to buy a copy of Bully.

          Just another reason for me to hate Jack Thompson, I suppose. The game sucked.
      • by jimstapleton (999106) on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:46PM (#18377751) Journal

        He has had zero effect on the sales of the games


        Funny, I don't quite think that's accurate.

        If he starts bitching about a game, I know people who will rush out to buy it.

        If ever said a game is good, they would rush to put it on their "not even on a very cold day in hell" list.
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by HTH NE1 (675604)
          Then they should add a "Jack Thompson Seal of Disapproval" to the packages to boost sales.

          (Hopefully the makers of Thompson's Water Seal [thompsonsonline.com] will have a sense of humor over it.)
        • While that may be true, it's also true that some of his campaigns, notably the one against Bully which he enmemified (is that a word? To create a meme of) as a "Columbine Simulator", resulted in retailers removing the game from the shelves and making the game unavailable.

          Not being able to buy a game can severely dampen its circulation.

        • by Atario (673917)

          If he starts bitching about a game, I know people who will rush out to buy it.
          1. Make egregiously violent and sexual game
          2. Anonymously send it to Jack Thompson, making sure he has all the information to identify it publicly
          3. Wait for him to squawk about it
          4. Wait for hype to set in
          5. Release game
          6. Profit!

          No "???" here...
        • by adam613 (449819)
          I'm part of that crowd. I would never have noticed Bully if JT hadn't made a fuss about it. Instead, I bought it, and it ended up being a pretty good game.
        • by pravuil (975319)

          If he starts bitching about a game, I know people who will rush out to buy it.

          Negative advertising is one thing, but pursuing legal action is another. Court costs, PR, research, etc. . . After a while it's more like a nuisance than it is a marketing ploy.

      • by kmcrober (194430)
        He has had zero effect on the sales of the games

        From the summary, it sounds as if Take Two will have to provide some sort of evidence that he does affect their sales (or in some other way impacts their bottom line) to prevail. They need to show that his suits damaged them, and it doesn't look like they'll be relying on the expense of defending themselves against the suits as the sole damages. In fact, their incentive now is to pad the impact he's had on their sales, in order to cast his actions in the wor
        • by Sigma 7 (266129)

          From the summary, it sounds as if Take Two will have to provide some sort of evidence that he does affect their sales (or in some other way impacts their bottom line) to prevail


          The bottom line is impacted by having to spend money defending against groundless lawsuits. Money spent on defence could instead be applied to advertising (i.e. hiring a person to make a game look bad in a controlled manner - for the opposite effect of making the game popular..)

          • by kmcrober (194430)
            Yes, that would be sufficient to meet the legal elements of the claim. Most attorneys in that position wouldn't settle for the minimum necessity, however - Take Two's incentive is now to argue that their damages are as large as can be reasonably argued.

            There are some counter-incentives, I suppose - they don't want to encourage Thompson or copycat Thompsons by making them think that the frivolous suits have a serious impact. But I don't think that Take Two is very worried about that; Thompson himself is al
      • by Rallion (711805)

        As for being a pain in the ass, aside from contempt I don't think so.


        Luckily for right-thinking people, some of the shit he's pulled most definitely qualifies as contempt, as anybody who saw the videos of him bringing that hearing where he brought a giant poster knows.

        He actually directly insulted the judge. What the hell?
    • If he can't file lawsuits against Take Two, he'll have his friends ... okay, he'll hire some guys off the street and have them file the lawsuits and retain him as their attorney. This assumes, of course, that he's still a member of the bar once the Florida bar finishes debating whether to disbar him [wikipedia.org].
  • Well... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:36PM (#18377585)
    I hope he knows a good lawyer!
  • We can only hope (Score:2, Interesting)

    by EvilGoodGuy (811015)
    I really do hope Take Two can find a case here, I know I've been angered more than once by his rediculous opinions, and it would be nice to finally shut him up.

    They should just pull a Viacom though, and ask for $1,000,000,000 in compensation.
    • I hope they make him apologize, like the EFF did this guy [slashdot.org].
      • by LingNoi (1066278)
        You obviously don't understand Thompson.

        There is Thompson's way and.... well thats it unless you want to be involved in a lawsuit.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by stratjakt (596332)
      I know I've been angered more than once by his rediculous opinions, and it would be nice to finally shut him up.

      Yeah. I wish all the people I disagree with would shut the fuck up. It ought to be illegal to hold different views from the majority. People shouldn't be free to speak whatever they want.

      The guy should be held accountable for frivolous lawsuits, but he has the right to say whatever he wants. To sue him squawking about "free speech", with the intention of "shutting him up", is way beyond hypoc
      • by Applekid (993327)
        While I agree Take Two summoning "Free Speech" on this one is pretty hypocritical, the free speech Thompson enjoys is limited.

        If he shouts loud enough referring to baseless claims, this voice is only as loud as the next anti-everything guy. That's a right and no harm no foul. There are lots of groups who agree with him and petition and demonstrate. More power to them.

        But once he starts filing frivilous baseless lawsuits, all of a sudden his voice is amplified on the taxpayer's dime. Investors become skiddis
      • It's tit for tat.
        Jack has complained that the bar is stifling his free speech, and then goes and stifles someone else's?
        I call shenanigans.
        -nB
      • by jgoemat (565882)

        The guy should be held accountable for frivolous lawsuits, but he has the right to say whatever he wants. To sue him squawking about "free speech", with the intention of "shutting him up", is way beyond hypocritical - almost lawyerish.

        They aren't suing to shut him up, they are suing him to stop his frivolous lawsuits. They aren't preventing him from expressing his views at all, just from harassing people that are expressing theirs. If someone decided that shooting lawyers was their way to "speak out" a

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by geminidomino (614729) *

          If someone decided that shooting lawyers was their way to "speak out" against lawyers, is that free speech?
          Oh gods, PLEASE say yes!
      • by @madeus (24818)
        The guy should be held accountable for frivolous lawsuits, but he has the right to say whatever he wants.

        Not in the United States he doesn't (nor in Europe for that matter). There are already limits on free speech, limits that I'd say are generally quite reasonable.

        The court can legally prevent you from spouting the sort of unfounded bile he does about a person, an organization or a company, or it's products. The latter reflects what is happening here.

        If I were to go around at the volume he does telling peo
    • by 91degrees (207121)
      I really do hope Take Two can find a case here, I know I've been angered more than once by his rediculous opinions, and it would be nice to finally shut him up.

      I really hope they don't. I've been angered many times by his opinions, and I hope to be angered many times more. Being offended gives me a fuzzy warm feeling that the right to freedom of speech is being upheld.
      • by sqlrob (173498)
        Jack should be free to say whatever he wants. He should not be allowed to lie and harrass companies in court.

        He needs to be smacked down in court, and hard. If he wants to stay a self proclaimed "expert" on games, that shouldn't be blocked at all.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by CelticWhisper (601755)

        The problem is that in this case, upholding it is actually doing it a disservice as he attempts to stage his ideological attacks against it.

        If I were to stand on a soapbox in town square and proclaim that video games are immoral and anti-christian and the spawn of the devil and blah blah blah, the alternate-universe me sitting here and reading /. would agree with you that I'm just exercising my right to free speech.

        However, if I were to stand on a soapbox and say all these things about videogames being

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by abb3w (696381)

      They should just pull a Viacom though, and ask for $1,000,000,000 in compensation.

      Kinda hard to do with a straight face, given that they're trying to convince a judge that his lawsuits are frivolous— the word "Chutzpah" springs to mind.

      There's no hope of them getting a billion bucks out of him, even if he not only goes bankrupt but shishishorupf [google.com]. I'd settle for disbarring and a federal injunction, since they might have a hope of actually getting that. Tar and feathers would be a classic touch

  • gtaIV (Score:5, Funny)

    by mastershake_phd (1050150) on Friday March 16, 2007 @01:43PM (#18377707) Homepage
    They should make Jack Thompson a character in GTA IV. Maybe a child rapist you must beat to death with the limbs of dead hookers.
    • Re:gtaIV (Score:4, Interesting)

      by phorm (591458) on Friday March 16, 2007 @02:16PM (#18378125) Journal
      That might be pushing it a bit, but how about making a lawyer-type character with a penchant for chasing ambulances?

      Maybe a side-quest could be to steal an ambulance and make it to "target X" before the lawyer manages to catch up to you, or perhaps to reach X ambulances and/or eliminate the lawyer before he reaches them.
      • by Chris Burke (6130)
        If he chases the ambulence, then the quest should be to steal the ambulence, drive off slowly so he can keep up, and drive it off a bridge into the ocean.

        And if that wasn't the quest, it's still what I'd do.
    • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Dude, don't insult those poor child rapists and dead hookers by bringing them down to Jack's level. That's just cruel and insensitive.
    • Re:Talk Show (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Devir (671031)
      Better yet, just have him as a sit in guest on the in game talk radio show. It would be an embarassing parody.
    • by iabervon (1971)
      It would be great if the reason you can't get to the second area at the start of the game were that there was an injunction in frivolous litigation preventing it, until the case is dropped at some convenient time in the story.
    • Thats so funny I can't stop laughing! I'd love to see them name him something like "Tom Jackson" since they can't use Jack Thompson without getting character defamation suits. Of course.... it is a common name.
  • What puzzles me is that this moronic buffoon still has his law license. With his track record for groundless lawsuits and general media whoring you would think he would have been disbarred by now.

    I guess that's why Fark has a "Florida" tag.
  • TT should put in a "takeout the evil lawyer" mission in the next GTA. They could make it so obvious they are talking about JT, while being sure not to mention him by name, etc. to maintain plausible denyability. That would just be great. It could be one of those missions you can play over and over again, with it getting a little harder each time. What could the mission reward be? I dunno - but it would be pretty funny and the ultimate revenge. (:
  • I'm not a fan of Take Two and their shoddy publishing, but it's about time!
  • This is his response, but it sounds like some retard on an internet forum...

    Dear Gamers and Gamer Publications on the Internet and Elsewhere:

    I have been praying, literally, that Take-Two and its lawyers would do something so stupid, so arrogant, so dumb, even dumber than what they have to date done, that such a misstep would enable me to destroy Take-Two. With the filing of this SLAPP lawsuit last week, my prayers are finally answered.

    This lawsuit, filed in US District Court for the Southern District of

  • Why does this have anything to do with religion?

    I'm from the UK so I only get to read news but to spread ignorance and use religion to get his own way.. This guy is going to hell if it exists.

The amount of weight an evangelist carries with the almighty is measured in billigrahams.

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