Search for an Unknown Well-Wisher

Surprise in the mail

The thought that we are practically always under surveillance can feel unsettling.  The idea may lead us to second guess our internet searches, our purchases in the grocery store, or our text messages to friends and family.  Hundreds of reported women throughout the country, however, have recently raised concerns about communication they have received that does not necessarily coincide with their everyday patterns and habits.  Their red flags have triggered the search for a “Jenny B” and her reason for sending them coupons, gift cards, and greeting cards.  What is the purpose of this kindness?  According to the cards, it is to congratulate the women on their recent pregnancies.  The disturbing factor in this string of events is that many of the women who have received the gifts are not pregnant. Read more

No Crying, Or Lawsuits, in Kickball

Kicked out of a job

A required element of any sport is competition.  There are times, however, that competitiveness can get out of hand, especially in recreational kickball.  On August 6, the South Carolina teams, “Recreational Hazard” and the “Toe Jammers” went toe to toe for a grueling eight innings before the tension rose to an incredible high. A disputed call at home plate resulted in a debate between player, Michael Lockliear and umpire, Graylnn Moran Jr.  A couple of days later, the umpire received a text message from his supervisor, stating that a third party no longer wanted Moran to officiate games, and was therefore terminated from his position. Moran has since filed a lawsuit, claiming slander, conspiracy, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and tortious interference with a contract. Read more

Taylor Cannot Swiftly Escape This Lawsuit

Copying a song?

A 2017 copyright lawsuit in reference to Taylor Swift’s popular hit “Shake It Off” is going back down to the US District Court level for further proceedings.  Songwriters Sean Hall and Nathan Butler sued Swift for her lyric “players gonna play…haters gonna hate.”  According to Hall and Butler’s claim, Swift allegedly stole the line from a 2001 song they wrote entitled “Playas Gon’ Play” for the music group 3LW.  When the 2017 lawsuit was dismissed, a judge ruled that the original 2001 lyric was “too brief, unoriginal, and uncreative to warrant protection under the Copyright Act.”  A recent panel of three judges, however, disagreed with that reasoning, and were in favor of the plaintiffs’ appeal. Read more

Caught on Camera

Airline antics gone wrong

Traveling in an airplane is scary enough, without the thought of your flight crew spying on you. In a February 2017 flight, embarking from Pittsburgh to Phoenix, a Southwest Airlines flight attendant discovered an iPad in the cockpit.  The iPad was live streaming a video of the other pilot using the bathroom.  The flight attendant, Renee Steinaker, took out her personal cell phone to photograph the iPad, as a way of documenting the incident. Due to the unprofessional and intrusive nature of the streamed video, Steinaker reported the event to her superiors at Southwest.  Steinaker was not met with an ethical response, however, and was told to not reveal the contents of the video to anyone. Read more

Pitt Needs to Make It Right

Constructing a sound lawsuit

Brad Pitt is in the spotlight again, and the reason is something other than promoting a new movie. A lawsuit filed on behalf of several victims of Hurricane Katrina are taking action against Pitt and his charitable organization, Make It Right.  In an effort to assist those devastatingly impacted by Hurricane Katrina, Pitt’s foundation built homes to replace the structures lost in the hurricane.  According to the lawsuit, the homes constructed by the organization are quickly deteriorating.  Although many victims are left to live in homes that are apparently unlivable, Brad Pitt is denouncing all responsibility and involvement in the alleged neglect. Read more