Digital Media Lawyer Blog: “Communications Decency Act update: Plaintiffs seeking to get defamatory posts removed from an online website have often been stymied by the Communications Decency Act which protects the web host from suit for publishing third party posts. However, for some time, plaintiffs have been getting around this by seeking an injunction against the original author of the post and then asking the court to enforce this injunction against the website operator under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 65. For more on this strategy, see Eric Goldman’s blog post of November 10, 2009.
However in a December 21, 2009 ruling a federal judge in the Eastern District of Illinois ruled that this strategy violates federal law. See Blockowicz v. Williams . . . The plaintiffs in this case brought a defamation against the defendants, Joseph Williams and Michelle Ramey, for statements published on various websites, including the Ripoff Report (www.ripoffreport.com). The defendants apparently never answered the complaint and the court entered a default judgment against them, requiring them to remove their defamatory postings from the websites. However, the plaintiffs were never able to contact the defendants, and the posts remained on-line.”