What Sort of Person is Dan Lyons?

Well, a few days have passed, now, since Dan Lyons removed the most recent few articles from his blog. No explanation has appeared there that I’ve seen. No answers to questions I’ve been asking.

And it’s a few days since PJ mentioned Lyons in her “Where’d They Get That? – Part One” article, in which she says, with The SCO Group’s rod in hand:-

I thought it would be fun to begin a new series, “Where’d They Get That”? in which I will carefully chronicle some obvious instances where SCO appears to have fed thoughts and documents to the press, starting with the year SCO chose, 2004. It stars, as you would expect, Maureen O’Gara and Daniel Lyons, Exhibit A and Exhibit B, but others will make cameos.

And it’s many hours since PJ’s article, “SCO Moves for Summary Judgment on Slander of Title in Novell Case”, in which she mentions Lyons a number of times. For example, she writes:-

If you were to assume that Lyons is also on the SCO team (you might find this account of a conversation between Dan Lyons and journalist James Turner of interest, where bias against me on the part of Lyons shines through), then you could also now understand the likely purpose of Lyons’ effort to rehabilitate O’Gara in the article he wrote about how bloggers are from the devil and all that.

But nothing has appeared on Lyons’ blog in response – except for one of the mysteriously disappeared articles.

But so what?

So, if I’m holding Lyons’ measuring rod the right way round, there would seem to be something fishy, to say the least, about the recent disappearance of his most recent articles.

Would it be fair to say that Dan Lyons has been banging on about PJ not writing an article about IBM’s patent lawsuits? And yet he’s posted no response (that he hasn’t then swiftly, with no explanation, deleted) to PJ’s recent articles raising questions about the much-theorised connection between him and The SCO Group. By Lyons’ own measuring rod, is that not downright fishy?

PJ, as quoted above, mentioned “the article he wrote about how bloggers are from the devil and all that.” The Grauniad had an article about it, which conveniently links to a printer-oriented version of Lyons’ infamous article.

In it, he paints a picture of (some) bloggers as “an online lynch mob spouting liberty but spewing lies, libel and invective.” But, apart from (I think just) one brief mention that “Attack blogs are but a sliver of the rapidly expanding blogosphere”, he writes as if blogs generally are used for “spewing lies, libel and invective.”

PJ and Groklaw get special mention, in a sidebar entitled, “Who is Pamela Jones?” Clearly, Groklaw, et al, are to be regarded as a prime example of “an online lynch mob”. (That would include me!)

Which nicely brings us back to the old theory that Dan Lyons is acting for The SCO Group.


The answer’s in the other sidebar, “Fighting Back”. “You Can’t stop bloggers from launching an allout attack on you or your business if that’s what they decide to do”, he says, “but you can defend yourself. Here’s how.” And then he proceeds to give his advice, which includes these tasty bites:-

START YOUR OWN BLOG. Hire a blogger to do a company blog or encourage your employees to write their own, adding your voice to the mix.

BUILD A BLOG SWARM. Reach out to key bloggers and get them on your side. Lavish them with attention. Or cash. …

Dan Lyons has a blog.

BASH BACK. If you get attacked, dig up dirt on your assailant and feed it to sympathetic bloggers. Discredit him.

Has Lyons ever bashed Groklaw? Oh, and who or what are his sources, again? Who or what are his sources?

ATTACK THE HOST. Find some copyrighted text that a blogger has lifted from your Web site and threaten to sue his Internet service provider under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. That may prompt the ISP to shut him down. Or threaten to drag the host into a defamation suit against the blogger. The host isn’t liable but may skip the hassle and cut off the blogger’s access anyway. Also:Subpoena the host company, demanding the blogger’s name or Internet address.

(Emphasis mine on “The host isn’t liable”.) He’s actually advising ill-founded or unfounded lawsuits?!?!? What’s a SLAPP? Why does it matter?

What sort of person is Dan Lyons?


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