Wednesday, June 20, 2007

South Financial - Follow

As reported here in early June, The South Financial Group subpoenaed Yahoo for the names of people who have been posting to Yahoo's TSFG message board, especially those commenting on the company's executives and a lawsuit brought by a former employee.

The Greenville News has now followed up with some details.

The lawyers still aren't talking, but in court filings they say they think that with the subpoenas they can find "admissible evidence" for the lawsuit involving former employee Ben Floyd, who says he was fired after revealing that security equipment was put in CEO Mack Whittle's home.

According to the story:
According to court records, South Financial has subpoenaed Yahoo e-mail messages for user accounts identified as: “stinkinattorney,” “nobuytsfgdog,” “themgamecocks,” “anotherscbanker,” “laurenschwalje,” “blackbeasst,” and “nomospag.”

South Financial wants the Internet protocol, or IP, records of all user profiles found on Yahoo’s message board titled South Financial Group (TSFG), including the dates and times each user profile was first created, according to court records.

The company also wants stored e-mails, postings, user profile data and IP addresses that belong to each user profile found at Yahoo; records, instructions, or directions that placed any of the user profiles under surveillance by Yahoo; and dates and times any passwords were changed for each user profile, according to court records.

South Financial also is seeking data that could identify any user that included conversations related to the South Financial message board where a user used “anonymous” as the login to gain access to the message board, according to court records.

One wonders specifically what "admissible evidence" TSFG hopes to find. Judging by the names and their posts, however, it sounds more like TSFG wants to find out whether any of its critics are current or former workers and whether they've been posting on company time -- and the lawsuit provides the cover to do it.

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