Thursday, August 02, 2012

Eric Goldman on the MyVidster opinion

Eric Goldman is in fine form today.  My target of choice is often the 9th Circuit, but he goes after bigger game: Judge Posner's self-confidence in divining facts and law.  Sample:
Judge Posner drafted this opinion, which means that (as usual for him) it reads like a barely edited first-draft. As usual for Seventh Circuit opinions, it makes a number of questionable and undefended offline analogies, makes assumptions about factual questions that could/should be remanded to the district court, barely engages with or cites to other legal precedent, raises and addresses issues that the litigants never raised, and is filled with gratuitous digressions (e.g., an uncomfortable discussion that gay ethnic pornography might be illegal, a contention neither party advanced; and an odd discussion about the reputational capital benefits of sharing content). ...  As a result of the opinion’s characteristic affectations, parsing this opinion is needlessly difficult, so I can only do so much to deconstruct the legal principles in it.  

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