Last week, Michael Arrington wrote on TechCrunch about Richard Figueroa, a photographer who was making obnoxious legal threats about a copyright violation of an Ashton Kutcher photograph. Figueroa mistakenly believed the photo, which showed up in a Google image search incorrectly linked to TechCrunch, was published on the site.

As Figueroa was calling TechCrunch advertisers and urging they boycott the site, Arrington published Figueroa's emailed legal threat, which included his address and phone number.

I don't know the law in this area, but when you speak critically of someone on a high-traffic web site and include their address and phone number, you know with absolute certainty what's going to happen next. Some readers with too much aggression and too little decency will call the person and harass or even threaten them. I think you bear some moral if not legal responsibility for inciting the behavior.

The same situation took place on a much larger scale with Ellen DeGeneres and a pet adoption agency this week in Pasadena, Calif. The agency took a dog back after DeGeneres broke her adoption agreement and gave it away to friends, and she made the dispute public in a sobbing rant on her daytime talk show.

You'll never guess what happened next. Mutts and Moms, an adoption agency run by a pet store in Pasadena, Calif., is getting death threats, according to founder Marina Batkis.

... Baktis expressed concerns for the safety of herself and her animals. "I haven't eaten, I'm sick and I've had heart palpitations," she said, sobbing. "My life is being threatened, this is horrible. I rescue dogs. I can't believe this."

DeGeneres, who has a net worth of $65 million, has unleashed a mob of irate viewers on a couple of women who run a strip-mall pet store. As one commenter wrote on the Washington Post web site, "it may be the most ridiculous use of celebrity I have ever seen. By the way she's carrying on you would have thought the dog died."

Sad as it is to see a two-week bond between family and dog severed by an adoption agency, I hope Mutts and Moms and Attorneys can make DeGeneres a couple million lower on the Forbes chart next year. Profligate wealth is wasted on the wrong people. If I were Ellen DeGeneres -- a phrase I don't get to say nearly enough -- I would just buy the strip mall and become their landlord, or if that fails start a pet store across the street that sells chew toys and catnip at predatory loss-leader prices. Failing that, I'd solve the problem with ninjas.

-- Rogers Cadenhead

Comments

There are so many problems in the world that could be solved by ninjas, if we'd just let them.


 

Unless I'm missing something, she didn't give any identifying detail as to the pet adoption agency in that clip. Did she mention them by name (or address, etc.) later in the telecast?


 

Apparently, when DeGeneres' TV show fed an unbroadcasted portion of her rant to TMZ, they told the site the agency was Mutts and Moms. That site released the video as an exclusive and was the first to report on it.


 

i think this agency was being unreasonable. they can't say they have always stuck to there rules. they don't even have all there paperwork in check. i think they are after a quick buck. this situation could have been handled much better by them. ellen atleast admitted she messed up. the agency can atleast say they could have handled things better. it is too bad all this drama for a dog.


 

Spud has a hard time associating fans of Ellen Degeneris with death threat fer some reason. That sed, how does TMZ end up with her unscripted feeds and are they not also liable in all of this? Way to turn a nice gesture into a dogs breakfast. Ellen broke the rules and then bitched when called on it. Why don't the police take the utterance of death threats more seriously? It still is illegal right?

This is a major faux paw! ^_^

Be Well.


 

What a completely selfish obnoxious post. How much good have you done for people. Educate yourself a little bit about the woman and get off your high horse.


 

At firt I really felt bad for Generes. But after getting the scoop from the attorney for these women that were villinized, I saw both sides. First, I wish more people cared like these women who opened this agency for homeless pets and wanting to make sure they go to the right homes. So what if this is Generes's hairdresser? They asked that she go fill an application and proceed through the proper channels. She refused.

I see too much animal abuse. Having money and a house does not make someone a good pet owner. I know people who are affluent but have been very irresponsible pet owners. See them ALL the time.

Good for them for sticking to their guns.


 


I like Ellen a lot but c'mon, this is crazy. She messed up. I wish that the agency would have given the dog back, but if I would have had to go through what the people at the agency are going through ( death threats, constant calls...) I would have said the heck with everyone too. Anyway to see what I really think go to

youtube.com

There's video with extra footage and my take on the whole deal. My videos are kind of ... different.


 

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