This case just got way out of control. If you don’t know what’s going on with the Oatmeal v. FunnyJunk you should read these articles now. Basically it all started a year ago when The Oatmeal’s Matthew Inman accused FunnyJunk of hosting his unlicensed work without credit. Inman, understanding the futility of policing the internet just grumbled and went about his business. Cut to a few weeks ago, FunnyJunk decides to sue Inman for his previous blog about FunnyJunk. Inman posts the legal papers he was served and decided to raise money for charity. The internet answers and donates money while villainizing the case lawyer. Case lawyer decides to sue everyone himself.
My 2 cents from the beginning….
FunnyJunk’s case against Inman doesn’t have a leg to stand on. But I’ll let Inman’s lawyer explain that one. I’ll just add how from a marketing stand point, FunnyJunk going after Inman was just a bad idea. Are they going out of business? Is that why they need $20K? Why would you threaten to sue a popular comic strip over a blog post he wrote a year ago? Are they going to sue any internet trolls that don’t like FunnyJunk? I’m having a hard time trying to rationalize the motivation for the law suit.
So obviously I’m backing Inman in this. But the biggest point I want to make here is, why did everyone start off by going after FunnyJunk’s lawyer? It’s not his fault FunnyJunk decided to sue. He was just doing his job. And however much we as a people might disagree with the law suit, it’s still in FunnyJunk’s corner. If FunnyJunk said, “you know what, nevermind”, Charles Carreon (the lawyer) would have just been on his merry way in search of another client. The proper action for those so angry as to flood hate mail is to go after FunnyJunk, not Carreon.
sidenote: I want to go on the official record on this public format to say that I’m not saying go flood funnyJunk with hatemail. I donated money to Inman’s cause, I have not gone to FunnyJunk.com nor have I linked them here in effort to not give them any more traffic. I did however click on the links to see Carreon posing in front of an American flag. It was funny. And yes, I’m afraid of getting sued. This guy is going after everybody.
Unfortunately, the internet went after Carreon and the man couldn’t hack the pressure. He accused Inman of sending the internet after him (false) and decided to sue Inman (because that’s what lawyers do). I can’t say I’m surprised. However, a real hard ass lawyer would have stuck by the statement “I represent my client”. That’s right Carreon, did you yourself forget that you weren’t suing the Oatmeal? Except that now he is. And he’s also suing the company that is hosting Inman’s charity efforts. And then he decided to sue the charities themselves. Brilliant.
The lawyer stereotype isn’t a nice one. In fact my first response when people started coming out against Carreon was “Of course he doesn’t care if his client has a frivolous law suit. He’s a lawyer, isn’t that synonymous with scumbag?” Which is wrong of me to think. My daughter’s godmother is a lawyer. She became a lawyer to help foster children. She’s not a scumbag though sometimes I see an evil glint in her eye when she goes after some asshole.
But Carreon just went about this all wrong. There’s just no nice way of saying “I’m suing the American Cancer Society because some people who donated money to the organization said some mean things about me.” I’m pretty sure he just elevated himself from typical lawyer to villain.