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Phil Mickelson fights Internet trolls in court
The legendary golfer is currently experiencing the Streisand Effect, where attempts to hush his critics only serve to bring them wider attention.
Golf legend Phil Mickelson is so fed up with anonymous Internet trolls, he’s gone to court just to identify them.
The documents aren’t available online, but according to Courthouse News, Mickelson has sued Internet service provider Videotron S.E.N.C. to identify the author of “several highly defamatory statements posted by one or more individual on the Internet.”
The official complaint identifies the user names of two trolls in particular, Fogroller and Longitude, who may prove to be the same person. Both accounts are protected and tend to go on obsessive, mean-spirited rants underneath Yahoo stories about Mickelson.
“Phil can’t get over His Wife getting together with Michael Jordan!!!! That had to hurt because Phil knows that he can’t please her so I guess he constantly thinks about what Jordan did to her…. Bwahahahahaha,” Fogroller wrote underneath one story, referring to a debunked rumor.
“Mickelchoke is a charter member of NAMBLA,” Longitude wrote under the same story.
Mickelson’s complaint may well end up an example of the Streisand Effect, meaning his attempts to hush his critics only serve to bring them wider attention. Yahoo commenters are not known for being a civilized group, and there are plenty other users with mean things to say about the golfer.
Under the same story, for instance, a commenter calling himself Bertt Farve referred to Mickelson as a “Fuhking fatassssss psoriasis ridden turd.”
“When is the media and the PGA going to investigate Phil’s affairs with his second family in Ohio?” asked commenter Phil Throws A Tantrum, referring to a similarly debunked rumor.
It’s going to take Mickelson more than a court order and a nine iron to escape this sand trap.
Photo by IsaacMao
A former senior politics reporter for the Daily Dot, Kevin Collier focuses on privacy, cybersecurity, and issues of importance to the open internet. Since leaving the Daily Dot in March 2016, he has served as a reporter for Vocativ and a cybersecurity correspondent for BuzzFeed.