CompuServe v. Cyber Promotions case brief summary
F: P: CompuServe
D: Cyber Promotions
P filed a motion for preliminary injunction
P is major national commercial online computer services, whereas D is in the business of sending unsolicited email advertisements to the P’s subscribers. P warned D to terminate the practice, but to no avail. And, P kept getting
complaints from its customers as to the spam mails sent by D. Finally, P implemented s/w programs to filter messages from
D without success.
I: In circumstances where one’s email services is interfered with the other’s spam email despite of several warnings to D to stop, whether D’s conduct resulted in diminishing of P’s equipment (chattel) even though it is not physically damaged so as to be held liability for trespass.
R: When the value or condition of the chattel is intentionally impared, trespass to chattel is established
A: D’s conduct is liable for trespass to chattel under 218 (d), bodily harm is caused to the possessor, or harm is caused to some person or thing in which the possessor has a legally protected interest.
C: preliminary injunction is granted
Co:1. A trespass to chattel
A trespass to chattel may be committed by intentionally using or intermeddling with the chattel in possession of another. 2. Dispossession
Not every interference with the personal property of another is actionable and that physical dispossession or substantial interference with the chattel is required.
3. Circumstances under which a trespass to chattels may be actionable
One who commits a trespass to a chattel is subject to liability to the possessor of the chattel if, but only if, (a) he dispossesses the other of the chattel, or (b) the chattel is impaired as to its condition, quality, or value, or (c) the possessor is deprived of the use of the chattel for a substantial time, or (d) bodily harm is caused to the possessor, or harm is caused to some person or thing in which the possessor has a legally protected interest.
Diminution in the value of the computer.
Consistent or inconsistent previous Glidden case?? (rather inconsistent)
Measure of value
First case- physical injury (market value)
Second case - If a value (actually only to the owner) to the owner changes, that’s enough..
Little girl is not protected in the interest of dogs owner
Harm to P’s business reputation and goodwill with its customers Internet business – international standard needed.
Intel- real damage, money loss (note 3 case)
Compuserve (broad interpretation of trespass ot chattels) , glitzen(narrow interpretaition of trespass to chattels)