NEW YORK CITY: Grindr Seeks Dismissal Of Lawsuit After Imposter Sends Over 1000 Men To Man’s Home

The Associated Press reports:

A gay dating app wants a judge to dismiss the claims of a New York man who says he’s been accosted at home and work by over 1,000 sex-hungry men after an ex-boyfriend posted fake profiles soliciting men interested in exploring violent fantasies.

Grindr asked a Manhattan federal court judge Wednesday to toss out Matthew Herrick’s claims, saying the Communications Decency Act protects it from liability and Herrick should sue his ex-lover instead. The act bars social-networking companies from being sued for speech used by their customers.

Grindr said it can’t be blamed because Herrick, a 32-year-old restaurant worker pursuing a career in acting and modeling, got “mixed up with a tech savvy, judgment-proof individual.”

The company said the lawsuit must be dismissed because Herrick’s lawyers “cannot identify any cases in which a court found that a website owed a duty to protect a plaintiff from third-party content. This is unsurprising, given Congress’ explicit instruction in the CDA that no such duty exists.”

“Judgment-proof” typically means broke and therefore unable to pay any ordered settlement.

From my first report on this case back in February:

Last October, Matthew Herrick was smoking a cigarette in front of his West Harlem brownstone when the first visitor appeared. As Herrick tells it, the man innocently pressed the buzzer for Herrick’s apartment.

Then he asked matter-of-factly if Herrick was the one who been communicating with him via the hookup app Grindr, and who’d minutes earlier invited him over for sex. Herrick said that he hadn’t—he hadn’t even looked at the app in a week—and asked how the stranger even knew his name.

That’s when the man pulled out his phone and showed Herrick a Grindr profile that included a photo of Herrick in his kitchen, taken from his Instagram account, including the 32-year-old actor and model’s face and bare chest. Herrick was unnerved. “That’s me, but that’s not me,” he remembers saying.

Herrick claims that he only got automated responses to “more than 100” pleas that Grindr delete and block the impersonation profiles created by his ex. He also says that the fake profiles falsely described him as HIV+ and interested in bondage/rape scenes. Men who responded to the fake ads were reportedly told that if he told them to go away, that was just part of the fantasy. Hit the first link for more.

  • PickyPecker
    • Jonathan Smith

      still not a reason to troll him
      sleep with him, yes….

    • Treant

      It must be hellish to go through life being that friggin’ ugly.

      • Phillip in L.A.

        “Too much love is worse than none at all.”

        –“There But For the Grace of God Go I”–Machine

        • Ginger Snap

          One of my top Disco Songs.

    • Reality.Bites

      And here I was thinking it was his ex’s profile-writing skills!

    • Hanwi

      It’s pretty shitty to post that, hasn’t the guy been beat up enough.

      • PickyPecker

        He’s a model. Look away if you don’t care for his type. Or do a quick google search to find more pics. Photos….it’s what models do! 🙂

        • Hanwi

          If a girl was a model and she was stalked/victimized would you post a pic of her and make a suggestive remark? Show a little class.

        • Yes, while we can DO a goggle search…we did not take the time to SHOWCASE the victim here…this is on you and ONLY YOU

        • If you want to do justice POST pictures of yourself and strip away the veil of hiding behind the internet…

        • Goodboy

          Shame on you for posting that PP. This man just wants to model in privacy.

          • Or rather he would prefer his picture not be linked to hundreds of men who could perpetuate the same thing that was already done to him…

          • Boreal

            His picture is already on the internet if PP was able to find it that easily. Put the blame where it belongs, on the ex, not on PP.

          • NO I am pretty sure that the ex did not MAKE PP post here so I am going to blame him…the moral high ground starts with your actions and goes from there…

          • Boreal

            Live your own life the way you want. If you want to lecture others join a religious group.

          • Hanwi

            When I hear about abuse the first thing I do is a google search for tawdry images then repost them…. /s

          • That is a perfect response…it reeks of decency and common sense…stay classy!!!

          • Derrick Johns

            LOL

          • Mrs. Councillor Nugent

            My bed is very private

          • Todd20036

            Mine isn’t. But I like it that way

          • Ginger Snap

            Hear hear!

      • This is the same behavior that Trump participates in and people collectively are SHOCKED and appalled…it is just wrong and what is the point of showing the person who was “victimized”…how about the person who committed the acts…

        • PickyPecker

          I’ll see if I can find some for the sake of your argument.

          • There is NO argument your actions are just WRONG…if you can not see that then you are part of the continual and growing problem here in America…called the moral decline…

          • Skokieguy [Larry]

            Gee, claiming something us libs do is totally like what Trump and the right does, so we’re all hypocrites. And you have a private comment history, hmmmn.

            Honey you have no argument. Troll fail.

          • Having my comments private is NOT a gateway that I am posting pictures of others that are unwarranted…REALLY how do you cross that shaky bridge of logic…

          • Andymac3

            Did you come here to sharpen your troll skills?
            – private profile
            – equating everyone to what Trump would do
            – claims everyone is just plain wrong and you are right

            The life of a troll is such a petty one.

          • Boreal

            No, he is not a troll and posts here regularly however he is not the arbiter of morality either.

          • Andymac3

            It hard to tell when someone hides their history and spouts off ‘like a troll’.

          • band

            Boreal and Picky Pecker both have blocked their comment history. But that’s probably just to hide the fact that all they ever do is post the most tired gifs, jpegs and memes, often having zero to do with the subject of Joe’s post.

          • Andymac3
          • Bad Tom

            They both have pretty excellent upvote to post ratios. Private profile or not, you can still see that.

            I’ve contributed quite a few upvotes to both of them.

          • band

            Yes, I know they both frequently rack up a bazillion upvotes for their lame image posts. It’s a sad commentary on what passes for discussion these days on JMG—what the throng wants and rewards.

          • barrixines

            Most of your posts here are criticising other posters. The usefulness of your occasional clarification is outweighed by your unpleasantness. Maybe you need to have a think about what JMG is actually for – you may find out that lame memes (and god knows I post enough of them) are enjoyable. comforting in a time of stress and posted with the full knowledge that even if we restrict ourselves to being as po faced as you, posting on Joe’s little blog will do little to change the world – as is the case of posting on any message board.

          • band

            I’m sorry that you can’t see the hundreds (thousands?) of substantive posts I made back in the js-kit days and back on whatever commenting app Joe was using before that one.

            I’m delighted that you find the comments threads in their current state of disarray to be of use. I know that a lot of people live for the the reliable diet of partisan outrage to be found in comments sections today, whether it’s at Breitbart, Occupy Democrats, The Daily Caller, Blue Nation Review, whatever. But I happen to believe that what’s going on there—and, often, here—is poisoning our democracy.

          • barrixines

            i post on the internet because I can’t do sudoku. In my opinion the mistaken belief that posting on the internet constitutes “doing something” is just as much of a dent in democracy. As far as partisanship goes – I’m not American but I do recognise being a fellow traveller with many of the posters here who amongst the silly memes offer warmth and wisdom and a sense of community during difficult times. I don’t think you’re getting exactly what brings people here and how the likes of Picky and Boreal are absolutely crucial to the success of JMG. No matter the vision you have in your head this isn’t a hard, political message board. It’s campy gossipy and fun – with the occasional well thought through political opinion.

          • band

            I know what the comment threads on here are like now, and why a lot of people come here these days. I also know what the threads used to be like 8, 10, 12 years ago. There was a lot more discussion of politics, which certainly didn’t preclude campy gossip or fun.

          • Boreal

            Thank you. I have ‘Band’ blocked, just another whiny troll.

          • Bad Tom

            Thousands of (self-claimed) useful posts in the past doesn’t excuse being an ass today.

          • Most of their posts are topical and in the case Boreal mostly written. If you want to criticize their argument or line of reasoning, then do that, but blatantly lying out their contribution makes you look worse.

          • band

            I wish that their comment histories were open so that you could accurately assess the ratio of image posts to written comments.

            But enough. This isn’t about Boreal or Picky Pecker. But it is quite sad to see PP further victimizing Herrick, and him and others here refusing to see what Hanwi has made painfully obvious in his single, short analogy above.

          • Well, if it’s isn’t about Boreal or Pick Pecker, then why even bring up their past/current contributions?
            If you address their arguments with this:

            Boreal and Picky Pecker both have blocked their comment history. But that’s probably just to hide the fact that all they ever do is post the most tired gifs, jpegs and memes, often having zero to do with the subject of Joe’s post

            Then what you’re saying is that their argument is invalid because of personality/posting-style, which as you may know is a fallacy. However, if that blockquote wasn’t addressing the argument, then why post it at all other than to be dickish?

          • band

            The substantive purpose of that comment was the first sentence, pointing out that True Words is not the only one in this subthread with a blocked comment history. The second sentence was a joke. A snide one.

          • Bad Tom

            You can google for their Disqus identity. Did you know that?
            Private histories only go so far.

          • Skokieguy [Larry]

            If many people on JMG enjoy and upvote their posts, then exactly how are they lame?

          • band

            FOX had the highest ratings in cable news for like 20 years. Does that mean FOX News isn’t lame?

          • Bad Tom

            Pretty soon, the only excellent thing in the world will be you.
            Sad!

          • barrixines

            Oh dear – is someone using the internet in a way you don’t want it to be used?

          • BJORN RAGNVALDR
          • Or they went private because they had some shady Russian followers like I had…

          • Boreal

            Mine is hidden as well because I post on RW sites until blocked. 😉

          • Skokieguy [Larry]

            Posting a hot photo of someone, that is a model is equal to Trump? This is symptom of moral decline?

            And “Or rather he would prefer his picture not be linked to hundreds of men who could perpetuate the same thing that was already done to him…” is basically saying that we who read JMG comments are all potential identify thieves who might commit a similar crime?

          • MT YVR

            Actually the argument I keep seeing elsewhere that’s very similar is against the unwanted gaze.

            It gets weird. Fast.

            On one hand, yep. If a woman who was a model was targeted in the same way I actually do think the response would NOT to put up photos of her, scantily clad and posed. I think we are socialized that there is such a thing as inappropriate gaze.

            The problem is… I’m not sure I buy it.

            If a person makes or attempts to make a living on their looks or sexualization of their looks… there is a difference between unwanted in an absolute sense and unwanted in the sense of we are not commodities 100% of the time. We are all, even celebrities, allowed privacy. To not make themselves available for our pleasure.

            But it’s weird, as I said.

            I’ll admit? It does make me pause – not condemn or judge, honestly, just pause – for a second that a man who is being targeted through sexual activity (Grindr add for sex) is then… covered by using sexy photos.

            There can be, not that I think there is here honestly, sometimes a feeling of “well of course, (s)he’s sexy as THIS… of course”. Like it’s… ok? Or understandable? To harass someone because of how we feel about their looks?

            I think, for me, that this comment thread brings up those thoughts and questions, but not in a “Oh my GODS you people are vile for doing this and that is TOTALLY what you’re saying”. Just. It’s adjacent to an issue. (shrug)

            Aka/tdlr: I understand both sides on this.

          • Skokieguy [Larry]

            I see the points you’re making. I don’t know the body of this man’s work. Are most of his photos meant to be erotic? Think of Nyle from Dancing with the Stars.

            That being said, anyone, include porn stars and sex workers can be victims of rape, identity theft, fake profiles, etc. But if the bulk of their public image is somewhat sexual, then posting it doesn’t seem unreasonable.

            What I find interesting is that in the original posting by Joe in February, two photos of Mathew were posted and no one had issue with it in the comments.

            Since ‘a thousand’ men showed up on his doorstep, showing (public) photos of the person does help illustrate why so many people would respond to the(fake) profile with his image. He’s a handsome man and certainly seems eager and proud to show it off. His image was used in a bad way by an ex. I think on this site, we are using it in a good way, the way he likely intended when he posted many selfies online – to be admired by other men.

          • MT YVR

            And that’s pretty much what I was thinking too. Almost to a T what I was thinking.

          • Phillip in L.A.

            Thanks for thoughtful post and interesting discussion to both you (MT YVR) and Skokieguy [Larry]!

          • I think it boils to consent of how an image is used. There is a difference between “I post this semi nude photos of myself for artistic and aesthetic pleasures of others” versus ” that person took my picture to use it to harass me”. We should not conflate the two and understand the context of usage.

          • Skokieguy [Larry]

            This! You said it far more succinctly than I.

          • PickyPecker

            In the words of a certain very wise wolf, I have already exercised my ‘blockity-block’ privileges. 🙂

          • Boreal

            I sent you an email.

          • PickyPecker

            Got it. responded.

          • And he is completely wrong in this case. Anybody who is trying to make it as a model (as in fashion etc) or especially a “model” (as in skin pics like this guy) would be more than happy to have his work seen. One doesn’t splash photos all over the web then hope that nobody sees them.

          • Boreal

            You shouldn’t have to. You did nothing wrong. The guy is a model and his pictures are in the public domain or you wouldn’t have been able to find one like this.

          • PickyPecker

            I agree and you are correct. He’s a goodlooking man and photographs well…and I’m sure he appreciates those of us who appreciate him and his portfolio!

          • Boreal

            If he wanted anonymity, he wouldn’t be a model.

          • DUMBEST argument ever…but alas you are free to make it

          • Boreal

            Yeah your argument is bullshit. You don’t get to lecture others about morality. The ex is to blame, not anyone else.

          • Todd20036

            He’d be an actuary.

          • Bad Tom

            If he didn’t want this photo to be on the net, he wouldn’t have participated in a professional modeling photo shoot, and then posted the finished, edited image on the internet.

            That is not a cheap-ass cellphone selfie. If someone DID take it with an iPhone 6s perhaps, Apple could use it as the basis of an ad, because it is an excellent, beautiful photograph.

          • Boreal

            Thank you for your expertise. It didn’t look like a cheap pic to me either but fairly polished.

          • BJORN RAGNVALDR
          • Boreal

            You’re doing a great job. He is super shiny.

          • Ginger Snap

            Shiny, Firefly reference? Well at least to this sci-fi geek.

          • Ginger Snap

            What a Beauty I like a bit more meat on my dinner.

      • Bad Tom

        It wasn’t unwanted publicity that upset him, it was all the strangers coming to his house. Those really are two different things.

        That looks like a modeling shot. It’s staged and lit! Carefully composed. The color has been edited. There’s an artful reflection in the bevel of the mirror.

        This picture was specifically produced to be posted on the internet. You can tell just by looking at it.
        ——-
        Art themes: texture, far rectilinear vs near curves, luscious hair is both. HDR processing done.

    • Skokieguy [Larry]
      • Derrick Johns

        I always knew a human could have loving relationship with a cat or dog or pig, But a chicken? Well, this is proof if you give love you may get it…a little more complicated with human beings.

        • Skokieguy [Larry]

          I tried to marry my toaster, but he said he was burned out and we are no longer together. All I have is the memories, and crumbs.

          • Derrick Johns

            LOL @ “…memories and crumbs.”
            I had an acquaintance who was into reptiles. He had snakes, lizards, and an iguana etc.–all in his apartment in West Philadelphia (this was back when apartments in University City were affordable). He invited me over one night. Now, you know I wasn’t going. Chickens, I can deal with, but not lizards.

          • Skokieguy [Larry]

            I can deal with reptiles in cages, but then I feel sad that they are in cages, so I guess I wouldn’t have enjoy that visit either.

    • William

      My house isn’t on GPS, he could come hide out here.

      • Boreal

        Party at William’s house!

        • PickyPecker

          It’s Friday. I hope he’s got some decent vodka.

          • Boreal

            Ramen. What a week.

          • William

            I’ll have my partner stop at the liquor store on his way home from work.

          • Phillip in L.A.

            AND good hors d’oeuvres!

  • Tawreos

    I guess I am lucky I only got a busted windshield from my Ex and not this type of shit.

    • Oh’behr in Minnesota

      1. One bad ex … I only got kicked out after being yelled at … I found out later after living with him for several years that I really wasn’t his type. Weird.

      2. Another Psycho ex left me and moved to another town and left me alone. I thought. Later he did write to my boss and tried to get me fired from a job. My boss said it wasn’t any of his business. My boss was a great guy.

    • Phillip in L.A.

      I got a chipped tooth from one ex- who decided he thought it would be fun to bash my head down against the steering wheel of my car

      • Ginger Snap

        I only got a broken heart, sigh…….

        • Phillip in L.A.

          Yeah, well, I got that, too, Ginger Snap! (Just not from the same guy.)

  • HZ81

    I am not legally minded or smart enough to discern Grindr’s culpability, if any, but his ex is a piece of shit who deserves prison time for his stalking and harassment. Anyone know if that’s happened?

    • Uncle Mark

      I would think that Grindr would attempt to take some responsibility, if they found multiple accounts linked to one mobile number or certain IP address, if the complaintant provided some proof of identity. (I had something like that happen to me YEARS ago, when I was young & pretty, with someone pretending to be me, and the site responded immediately.) I could see Grindr’s argument about not being willing to get in the middle of domestic disputes, but it would be in their best interests if they did look into this.

      On a side note, is it possible that this model is looking for attention to help his business…not that I want to blame the victim, but we can’t go into this blindly accepting everything he says. (i.e. OVER A THOUSAND men?!!)

      • HZ81

        They should take some responsibility for not helping him in any way, at least, and I don’t think he’s faking. A. this is shit publicity. B. Grindr acknowledges his plight now.

        • Juliaswood

          my roomate’s mother gets $62 an hour at home and she’s been out of work for 2 months. last month her pay was $19199 just working on the laptop for 3 hours a day. ➤ look at ➤ this site
          ➜➜➜http://www.GoogleFinancialCashJobs105BrandGreen/Home/Wage….
          ✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹:.::kr105..

    • I’m kinda curious as to why I’ve heard so little of the asshole ex. He should be facing repercussions for this too, not just grindr.

  • Do Something Nice

    Sorry, but if Grindr didn’t respond to his pleas for help, they are on the hook. For millions, I hope.

    • Natty Enquirer

      Oh? What exactly is your legal theory?

      • Bad Tom

        What is right and decent.
        Doesn’t stand a chance, I know.

      • Do Something Nice

        Once notified of the CRIME (impersonating someone else, sexual harassment, and possibly more) they were obligated to stop facilitating it.

        If I loan you my car every day and each day you use it for illegal illegal purposes and I am warned about it but continue to loan the car to you, I am complicit, no?

        • Phillip in L.A.

          So it sounds like you are saying Grindr was negligent by failing to respond in a meaningful way to the (alleged) gazillions of complaints. Do they have a duty to do so? This issue has been discussed well by Reality.Bites, BadTom, and William, below.

        • That_Looks_Delicious

          Not sure but I imagine Grindr covered its ass in one of those 20,000-word small-print TOS’s that everybody clicks yes on and never bothers to read.

          • GeoffreyPS

            Terms of service wouldn’t apply because they were not his (stalkee’s) accounts. I cannot be held to terms of service for someone else’s behavior. They only apply to MY use of the site.

          • That_Looks_Delicious

            Aha, good point.

    • RaygunsGoZap

      Yeah! It’s not that some asshole used your platform to harass him, it’s that you ignored his reports of an imposter and the resulting harassment. You wouldn’t have been liable. But, now you are.

      I have a friend who I met because of his impostor. He lived in Arkansas and the imposter here in the Seattle-area. I put it together between two apps and quickly verified the further was the real one. Both he and I reported that to Grindr multiple times and never heard back.

      Same thing with the underage kids I reported. Not a peep back and the profile remained.

  • Jonathan Smith
  • Dejerrity

    I think it was just one man who showed up 1,000 times.

  • bambinoitaliano

    Grindr was purchased by a Chinese company recently. You want to know how high level officials can potentially get blackmailed and commit treason. Look no further than countries where government can easily collect usable data for political sabotage. Consistent with the shit gibbon asking states to surrender voters info to be hand over to his Russian overlord.

    • Skokieguy [Larry]

      THIS

    • Oh’behr in Minnesota

      I’m glad my state is not giving the shit gibbon our voter information. So it goes to Russia.

  • Ragnar Lothbrok

    I had a horrible experience on grindr. It involved someone I already knew quite well but pretended to be someone else. I figured it out and he apologized profusely and even called me 15 times in one single day, to no avail.
    When a trust is broken, that’s it.

  • Lazycrockett

    The ex is one crafty bitch. specially the “not being interested” being part of the game.

    • Todd Allis

      Yeah, that part is particularly nasty.

    • Goodboy
    • Ragnar Lothbrok

      You say crafty, I say psycho

    • bambinoitaliano

      First thing to do after a breakup is to change all passwords even deleted the accounts and recreate if necessary.

      • Wouldn’t have helped here. The Ex was setting up new acc’ts.

        • Reality.Bites

          And most people have photos of all their exes unless they’re the scorched earth type of person. When photos of an ex are a folder on a hard drive I don’t have to think about, rather than a box I keep having to move out of the way in a closet, it makes it simpler to just keep them rather than have to look through them all and decide.

          • I would say one should watermark all their photos with the name of the person they’re sending it to so that they can trace who ever leak/misuse their photos, but if you already distrust your boyfriend enough to do that, you probably should not be with them.

      • Lazycrockett

        No first thing is always kill them.
        2nd hide the body.

        • Oh’behr in Minnesota

          Lol.

  • JWC

    about as unbridled as FACEBOOK

  • Eric Lewis

    Is having a thousand men show up at your house allot …. asking for a friend.

    • AtticusP

      I hope it wasn’t a slow night!

    • Phillip in L.A.

      It is if they all arrive at the same time!

    • colo303

      I consider my whoreness to be a 7 out of 10 scale and it’s difficult to even comprehend trying to get 100 guys to come over let alone 1000. Then again, I’m a 7 looking for a 9.

  • DaveMiller135

    That is a jerk move.

    I’m not completely comfortable with a credit card company having an idea about what I usually buy, but my credit card company will call me if I buy something unexpected. I would think GRINDR could algorithm their way to seeing that this wasn’t this guy’s usual behavior. Whether they’re required to, I guess, is the question at hand.

    • Reality.Bites

      It wasn’t his account that was hijacked. I could take your profile photo and put it on a grindr profile, and that’s what his ex did with his. Without knowing the details I’m also thinking he could have put it on lots of different profiles, used burner phones, etc.

      I really have no idea what grindr’s liability may be. It was really no different than if he communicated with the people by phone or email. The issue is that his ex had his photos and personal information and was misusing them. grindr likely has a duty to stop it when notified, but not to prevent it.

      • William

        They could have shut down the account and blocked the IP address of person who created it. Image software could prevent the same photos posted from ever being used again.

      • Bad Tom

        You could detect this. IP matching. Photo matching, as William suggests. Looking for multiple accounts with the same contact details.

        Some of this is straightforward, limited, database queries that could easily be done when a new account is created or edited.

      • DaveMiller135

        I don’t use it, but I have the impression that Grindr isn’t as neutral as a telephone or an email program. There’s information gathering and a certain amount of decision making included in it. I’m also not trying to make a case for Grindr’s liability, more just wondering if they shouldn’t see what they can do to prevent something like this. For example, some kind of Google image search would be able to see if the same pictures were being used in two accounts. And I would think you could have a prudish algorithm that might e-tisk at the thought of sending thousands of guys to one address.

  • AtticusP

    Proving once again that one man’s dream is another man’s nightmare.

    • The_Wretched

      Nightmare doesn’t cover it. It’d be a lifetime of PSTD and other mental dysfunction. Kink isn’t for the vanilla and it’s criminal for a reason absent consent.

      • Oh’behr in Minnesota

        If you’ve been stalked, (or abused by a lover), (I’ve been), it’s not a great memory. It does leave memories and reasons for not trusting people, even after you get to reasonably know them or assume you know them.

  • Blake J Butler
    • Reality.Bites

      It sounds too adorable for them, frankly. My guy has some bro-ish tendencies (sometimes calls me “buddy” or “dude”) and I could easily see myself, in a situation where I felt he was making an unwarranted fuss over something, call him my precious little bro-flake.

      • Phillip in L.A.

        In your case, though, “bro-flake” is intended to be adorable, right?!

  • ByronK

    I do find it interesting that AP describes the men as “sex-hungry”. Is that because its Grindr? If it was Tinder would they refer to the “1000 sex-hungry women” or just use the short form of 1000 nymphos? I doubt it.

    • Well it’s AP, so you never know. They’re kinda scum.

    • Sporkfighter

      Well, they did go on Grindr, then choose to go find a man they thought was advertising for sex. In this case, is “sex hungry” an insult, or an accurate description? Is being called “sex hungry” ever really an insult? Perhaps it’s a holdover from our puritan past we should dispense with. (And yeah, if a thousand women replied to a post specifically offering sex, they would be best described as “sex hungry”.)

      • ByronK

        I’m the last person who would say sex-hungry is an insult but in a syndicated news item? My main point was speculation about what terms AP would use if they were heterosexuals.

    • CharlestonDave

      And how is “sex-hungry” different from (sex-) thirsty?

      Asking for a friend.

      • Ginger Snap

        “Sex thirsty”is the act at the bar which may come with a large or small tab before deciding what you are taking home because you are “sex hungry.”

      • ByronK

        Well, on one hand they are interchangeable, but at the same time each one seems to have a certain nuance, don’t you think? Sex-starved is never a good opening I think because it makes you wonder, if things don’t work out, will I find a pot on my stove with a bunny in it.

  • Sporkfighter

    I’m willing to let Grindr off the hook for the first few postings. However, they certainly have a moral duty to stop the harassment after it’s been brought to their attention.

    • Natty Enquirer

      Oops. Morality gets in the way of “innovation” and “disruption.”

      • Phillip in L.A.

        Not to mention the bottom line!

  • TheSeer

    Grindr is not a dating app.

    • leastyebejudged

      lol, it’s a kind of “date”

  • Creating a venue ostensibly for profit and public use doesn’t absolve one of responsibility when individuals show up and use that venue for the commission of crimes.

    It is a crime to impersonate someone else for the purpose of causing them harm. Slander is a crime. Targeted ongoing harassment is a crime, whether it happens on the internet or not.

    Agreed, the CDA probably doesn’t apply here. But other laws do.

    • John30013

      I think the issue is that the actual prep (the vengeful ex-boyfriend) has no money or assets to pay a judgment. Of course, if the victim wanted to pursue criminal charges, that would be a different story.

      It does seem that Grindr might have been negligent if the victim complained to then repeatedly and got no response.

      • I don’t disagree at all. The Ex ought to be brought up on criminal charges, doesn’t matter if the sick jerk is broke. But as you say, Grindr appears to have been negligent in even having a means to deal with what most jurisdictions would consider illegal content, namely the reported stalking and harassment of an individual.

        • Indeed. The ex went after him on Scruff as well I believe, but Scruff did a permanent IP ban or some sort within 24 hours. Grindr was very careless in comparison.

  • Ninja0980

    The fact is this man brought an issue of harassment to Grinder’s attention and they chose to do nothing about it.
    They deserved to be sued and then some.

    • Boreal

      If they did not address this, they will be found liable. The ex should be arrested for stalking and harassment.

      • Yes, on both counts.

        • Boreal

          Only if he took screenshots of automated responses or saved them will he be able to prove their liability though.

          • Subpoenas and discovery are for that purpose.

          • leastyebejudged

            What part of judgement proof do you not get ?

      • bambinoitaliano

        This from the long list of Grindr disclaimer before the users click I Agree button.
        SAFETY. GRINDR IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR USE OF THE GRINDR SERVICES OR FOR THE ACTIONS OF OTHER USERS WITH WHOM YOU MAY EXCHANGE INFORMATION. GRINDR DOES NOT CONDUCT CRIMINAL BACKGROUND SCREENINGS ON ITS USERS. GRINDR ALSO IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ACTIVITIES OR LEGAL CONSEQUENCES OF YOUR USE IN LOCATIONS WHICH MAY ATTEMPT TO CRIMINALIZE OR LIMIT YOUR PERSONAL INTERACTIONS. YOU MUST MAKE YOUR OWN INFORMED DECISIONS ABOUT USE OF THE APPLICATION IN YOUR LOCATION AND ASSESS ANY POTENTIAL ADVERSE CONSEQUENCES.

        • Boreal

          Looks like they have covered that base. But the victim can still sue them for ignoring his requests. I would seek criminal prosecution of the ex. The money wouldn’t give me as much satisfaction as seeing my ex behind bars.

          • bambinoitaliano

            And this.
            Security of Your Account. You are entirely responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of Your password and account. You are entirely responsible for any and all activities that occur under Your account. You agree to notify Grindr immediately of any unauthorized use of Your account or any other breach of security. We will not be liable for any loss, damages, liability, expenses or attorneys’ fees that You may incur as a result of someone else using Your password or account, either with or without Your knowledge. You will be liable for losses, damages, liability, expenses and attorneys’ fees incurred by Grindr or a third party due to someone else using Your account, regardless of whether they are authorized.

          • Boreal

            Those indemnify grindr against being sued by the ex but I’m not so sure that they can evade responsibility to the victim if he did not create the accounts and requested that the fake accounts be removed.

          • Courts despise indemnity clauses and are under no legal obligation to respect them over other legal concerns.

          • Boreal

            Well hopefully he has copies of the automated responses or they still exist on grindr servers when he goes to court.

          • The Ex BF was creating spoof accounts in the former BF’s name, using stolen photos.

          • bambinoitaliano

            The victim will have to prove Grindr indeed know of the ex making bogus accounts with intentions of damaging him but choose to ignore. I am not on the side of the app, just playing the devil’s advocate.

          • Um, first instance, sure. But then Mr. Herrik tried more than 100 times to get those accounts taken down and they ignored his pleas.

            There’s your liability. Unfortunately, in these days of shoestring operations designed for maximum throughput of money, these social media platforms fail to institute and enforce acceptable-and-legal behavior policies and furthermore don’t hire enough staff to deal with the consequences of what they built.

            Otherwise, by your devil’s advocacy, Grindr couldn’t be held responsible if a bunch of people decided to run a kiddie porn operation there.

            A crime is a crime. Harassment is a crime. Failing to take appropriate action when being informed that your property is being used to commit crimes…is a crime.

        • A for-profit business can’t create a zone in which laws do not apply.

          “Hi, I’m opening a bar. Sign this and we’re not responsible in any way for any murders you might commit, even against people who have not come onto the premises and are just passing by.”

          Basically here, we have the Ex agreeing to those terms. The harassed fellow did not agree to them.

          • bambinoitaliano

            Agree. With extreme cases, I am sure Grindr can be found liable, there is no certainty when it comes to how judges lawyers and jury look at a particular case. That does not absolve the users the responsibilities of safe guarding their own security, safety and privacy.

          • As I said below: The Ex was setting up spoof accounts. When the guy being harassed asked Grindr to take them down, they basically ignored his requests.

          • coram nobis

            Then Grindr should sue him. I’m sure there’s something in the use-of-site terms to start with, and maybe telecommunications law as well.

          • coram nobis

            The bar might not be liable, unless the victim can show that they had a particular duty, breached that duty, and thus were a proximate or direct cause of the injury. Seems that the murderer bears some culpability.

            Crim. Law Professor: So, here’s a hypothetical. A tennis pro is in a bar, and he’s demonstrating his championship-winning technique with a tennis racket. He kills a patron on the backswing. What crime has he committed? Um, [Coram Nobis]?
            Me: Involuntary manslaughter. And racketeering.
            Class: EWWWW.
            Me: (bad Bogart imitation) Lissen, I know a racket when I see one.

          • ultragreen

            The harassed fellow is a Grindr user too, so he did agree to those terms. The courts may not take those terms very seriously, however, because they attempt to exempt Grindr from any and all lawsuits, even after repeated complaints have been filed by a user about another user of Grindr.

  • Frostbite

    Grindr was sold out to a Chinese company back in January.

    • leastyebejudged

      So all the morons on Grindr now are in a Chinese government file !

      • coram nobis

        They could find that out simply by reading the court filings, John Doe v. Ex-Boyfriend and 1000 Tricks, Fed. Dist. Ct. of Lower Manhattan.

    • m_lp_ql_m

      This is relevant how?

      • BobSF_94117

        Deeper pockets.

  • Ninja0980

    To add to what I said below, the ex certainly needs to be charged with stalking at the very least given what he did.

    • bambinoitaliano

      Once he is committed, Grindr should be task with the responsibility to delete all of the offender’s accounts and banned for life.

    • Bad Tom

      Quite possibly identity theft as well.

    • coram nobis

      Those are criminal charges, or maybe should be filed that way. Using an interstate means of communications might mean a Federal charge. The only question is whether the evidence from either proceeding is usable in the other.

      EVIDENCE PROFESSOR: What was this case about, and what was the issue?
      ME: It involved two Chicago brothers, J.B. and J.C. Wright, who were suspected of setting their buildings on fire and collecting the insurance money. At issue was the admissibility, in their criminal trial, of testimony from their civil trial. Also at issue was whether two Wrights can make a wrong.
      CLASS: EWWW.

      • Phillip in L.A.

        There doesn’t seem to be any indication that criminal charges were (or are going to be) filed in this case, though, coram nobis! I’d say there could be a big Fifth Amendment issue here, if (for example), the malefactor were charged criminally and then declined to testify. Could the photos, etc., be used against him in a later civil trial, especially if there was no prior opportunity to cross-examine? Is the result the same under Fed.R.Evid., as under N.Y. CPLR?

        • coram nobis

          Right now it seems to be a Federal civil proceeding. I imagine that since Grindr uses interstate telecommunications, it would be a Federal criminal matter, if it comes to that. Fed. R. of Evid. 301-302 do discuss state law, esp. in 302 the applicability of state law under Erie doctrine, and the Fed. R. of Evid. apply to both civil and criminal Federal proceedings. (State evidentiary privilege may also apply in a civil proceeding, see R. 501).

          There should be plenty of case law on the civil-criminal portability of evidence. I vaguely remember SEC fraud prosecutions in NY-NJ that might bleed over into civil actions, Rule 10b-5 actions maybe.

          • Phillip in L.A.

            Good answer! 🙂

  • bambinoitaliano

    Grindr has a point that it’s the ex that should be sued. It’s beyond harassment when the victim is an actor and model. His image is a business property that translate to financial damage. If the court can prove his ex committed a crime, then Grindr has the legal duty to shut down and ban the ex from using the app. The apps merely serve as a medium for two or more consenting adults to hook up, it should not be responsible for its members soured relationships.

    • Eh. If the app simply allows harassment to continue, they’re ethically liable to me, even if they’re not legally liable.

      • bambinoitaliano

        I believe buried within the clauses of disclaimer on Grindr, there are double edge sword coverage that the app cant be use to apply only on itself and not the users. The law does not usually work that way.

        • On the contrary, the courts do not like it when companies behave irresponsibly and then try to get out of it through indemnity clauses. They’re prone to simply ignore said clauses.

    • coram nobis

      Then the remedy should be a specific court order regarding Grindr and the ex-boyfriend’s account, perhaps. Something that doesn’t raise 1st Amendment implications like a general restriction would.

    • Chuck in PA

      Grindr has the option of reporting a user. This implies that they would or could do something. If Grindr has made little or no attempt or hasn’t the capability to do something, Grindr has to accept some responsibility.

  • m_lp_ql_m

    Obligatory philistine “in my day we had to go to a dark alleyway to be sexually harassed, and we liked it” post.

    • BobSF_94117

      You left out the snow drifts.

      • Elsewhere1010

        During earthquakes.

        • Phillip in L.A.

          And no lube

          • Walking 2 miles uphill, both ways.

          • Bad Tom

            That was the worst part.

            By conservation of something or other, there should be SOMEPLACE you get to walk downhill to both ways.
            ——-
            No, not perdition.

  • coram nobis

    Fun with Civil Procedure!

    Under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (see Rules 17-25), it’s not a one-way street. Grindr could counter-sue the plaintiff, alleging abuse of process, not just simply try to get the Plaintiff to sue the ex-boyfriend. Also, Grindr could file a cross-complaint against the ex-boyfriend as a proximate cause of their damages (legal fees, reputation, emotional distress). For good measure, they could sue John Does Nos. 1-1000. Joinder, impleading, interpleading, intervention, maybe a class action if the John Does have a case in their own right.

    https://www.federalrulesofcivilprocedure.org/frcp/title-iv-parties/

    (a) In General. A party asserting a claim, counterclaim, crossclaim, or third-party claim may join, as independent or alternative claims, as many claims as it has against an opposing party.

    (b) Joinder of Contingent Claims. A party may join two claims even though one of them is contingent on the disposition of the other; but the court may grant relief only in accordance with the parties’ relative substantive rights. In particular, a plaintiff may state a claim for money and a claim to set aside a conveyance that is fraudulent as to that plaintiff, without first obtaining a judgment for the money.
    — Fed. R. of Civ. Proc. 18

    • Phillip in L.A.

      “Abuse of process” because there’s no provable causation on the Plaintiff’s tort claim against Grindr (and/or because they have a complete statutory defense)? You might mean “malicious prosecution”–that would probably be an excellent defense strategy (one I have actually used sparingly in the past, to very good effect).

  • Nowhereman

    Sick. I’m glad I have no interest in online social networking. I won’t even go near Facebook.

    • coram nobis

      At some point in our lives we go to America’s Test Grinder and share meatloaf recipes instead.

    • bambinoitaliano

      This is the case of technology is far more advance than the users and the law could adapt. 99% of apps on our devices ask to share all your information that includes all your contacts, location, files, access to turn on and off of your microphone and camera at any time, access to add or delete any information in your devices. We do not allow guests let alone strangers to rifle through our drawers and cabinets when invited to our home but many of us seems so readily to permit these app developers to do something even more invasive just to be able to play a game of Candy Crush or Flapping Bird.

    • I should think that someone who has no interest in online social networking would not even be here even commenting anonymously.

  • Jmdintpa
  • Joe Smith

    Five! Ten! Twenty! Fourty!
    Fifty! Sixty! Seventy! Eighty!
    Eighty- Five. Ninety! Ninety- Five!
    Whooh!

  • bdsmjack

    That is one douche-y ex.

  • SFHarry

    It is annoying when a company is warned that there is misuse of their
    site and they won’t do anything about it. I think they should be held
    liable when they do get the info but refuse to act. Especially if
    someone is paying to use their site.
    There is a guy on Facebook who uses the name “Davenport” as part of his multiple aliases. He tries to scam gay men into sending him money. He basically tells them he is in love with them within about 5 minutes of communicating and then scams them for money. I usually play along for fun until I get bored. He uses the name “Davenport” because he has multiple pictures of an army guy with the name on his uniform.
    I have reported this guy and all his alias to Facebook repeated times. Every once in a while they will take down one of his aliases but claim some don’t violate their policies.
    They have time to harass Drag Queens who use their stage names but just don’t have enough time to stop scammers from stealing money from people.

    • bambinoitaliano

      The legitimacy of social media and apps are base on number of users. Their entire reputations are build on it even many of the so call users are bots. The foundation of these companies are as stable as those subprime loans the financial institutions whipped up ten years ago.Users assume Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Grindr, even Air BnB and Uber for that matter have the same obligation of a traditional corporate with discipline. On the contrary the lack of new laws surrounding technology on the consumer front barely exist. It’s a wild west where users have to fend for themselves.

  • Phillip in L.A.

    Why was this case filed in federal court? It sounds like the statute quoted does provide Grindr a pretty good defense, though (assuming it applies)

  • Although I feel that the fault lies with the psychotic ex-boyfriend (who should do prison time for a stunt like this, IMO), I would also agree that Grindr is HORRIBLE about blocking or banning fake profiles/catfish. I find fake profiles all the time and report them and nothing happens. It’s a total waste of a feature, it’s like the “close door” button on an elevator. The report button on Grindr is purely decorative.

  • Elsewhere1010

    So who owns Grindr? Names? Photos? They hide because they don’t want to be responsible and they know that while they may have a legal argument they’ll get tarred and feathered on their choice of satisfying their greed and responsibility to their users?

    Seriously… who owns Grindr?

    • Phillip in L.A.

      Hasn’t Joe written about this before!?! I seem to recall it is owned by some disgraceful homocon(s), but I am too lazy (and rushed) too look it up now

      • leo77

        Manhunt is owned by Homocons not sure about Grindr

        • Phillip in L.A.

          That’s right–it was Manhunt! ty, leo77!

    • ChrisMorley

      Beijing Kunlun Tech has completed its acquisition, after initially investing in the company back in January 2016.
      http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/05/25/chinese-tech-giant-buys-grindr/

      • Elsewhere1010

        So they’re beyond the scope of public opinion. They simply don’t care and don’t have to. Ever.

        When it comes to sex, it appears we’ll sell our soul to anyone.

    • djcoastermark

      Some Chinese company bought them recently IIRC.

  • Jacob

    That’s one way to get noticed!

  • Juliaswood

    my roomate’s mother gets $62 an hour at home and she’s been out of work for 2 months. last month her pay was $19199 just working on the laptop for 3 hours a day. ➤ look at ➤ this site
    ➜➜➜http://www.GoogleFinancialCashJobs105BrandGreen/Home/Wage….
    ✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹✹:.::kr105…

  • theonlyseven

    Wow, that’s like some weapon grade psycho-ex material there. What happened to just using a can of shaving foam to write something rude on their car?