Abd files a lawsuit

Well this is a blast from the past: Lomax v. WikiMedia Foundation, Inc. et al.

If you google it, you will see discussion of Abd’s lawsuit is all over Wikipediocracy, Sucks, Reddit, etc. etc.

Abd once got into a discussion with Wil Sinclair, of Lila Tretikov fame, at Wil’s now defunct website, Offwiki or somesuch. They started discussing I think it was OCD, and the website was never the same afterwards, although some blame liquid threads for its demise.

I forget whether Abd (or was it his family) has some disorder or not, but I’m sure he has spoken about it publicly.

Since this doesn’t have a whole lot to do with gender, I’m just going to make one comment.

“Every man who is his own lawyer, has a fool for a client.”

This probably goes for every woman too.

It is being reported that WMF has retained the law firm Jones Day and the attorney is Christopher M. Morrison of Boston.

Somebody please take up a collection for Abd, before he gets hurt.


Note: there now is a “go fund me” here, Abd has info about the court case on his website here http://coldfusioncommunity.net/lomax-v-wmf/ .  See Lomax v. WMF: Abd names names

24 thoughts on “Abd files a lawsuit

  1. In regard to Abd ul-Rahman Lomax, do you have any screenshots or archived copies of the debate he had with Will Sinclar on Offwiki?

    Abd claims to have been on the internet for thirty years, all I have seen him do is pick arguments with people so his ban list is massively long. He has been banned on almost every single forum or website he has joined. The LENR cold fusion community website banned him, as have RationalWiki, Encyclopedia Dramatica, Wikiversity, Wikipedia and Wikipediocracy. I would be interested in seeing if he was banned on the Offwiki website.

  2. “Robert” would likely be a Smith brother. Will Sinclair was naive. I tried to help him, but he was entirely too freaked out, he came unglued when a user threatened to sue him. He simply did not have what it takes to be Mr Responsible for a public wiki that actually attracts participation. I do have many files from that sequence, but they are hidden in a Wiki database that would need to be updated and I haven’t gotten a Round Tuit. Will Sinclair was heavily attacked by Vigilant, again as I recall. I was banned on WPO at about that time, very probably from confronting Vigilant, who was their pet attack dog.
    Will had no concept of how blocking a user might be necessary, about the distinction between a short block for allegedly disruptive behavior and a ban. He imagined that blocking was never necessary, until he was faced with real life and his ideas just plain didn’t work. Short blocks are the equivalent of a chair ruling, “Sit down, Mr Angry Member, you are out of order,” which is not censorship at all.
    Very few Wiki users understand deliberative process, which is one reason it is such a mess on Wikipedia. The entire community was naive.

  3. Well, there was a lot about Offwiki that was hard to understand.

    Mostly I remember Wil taking the side of Greg Kohs in his feud with WMF, and refusing to attend any WMF conferences himself unless they lifted the conference ban against Kohs.

    Vigilant likes to play the Bad Boy, the kind your mother warned you about, the kind the heroine always marries at the end of one of those pulp romances with the windswept Gothic mansion on the cover, and everyone loves him for it.

    1. I pity the heroine who marries such. Vigilant is vicious.

      Wil meant well, very well, but was utterly naive and had no experience dealing with a real wiki community. Offwiki had possibilities, but would have needed an Owner who knew how to support administrators, not react hysterically to conflict, as he did. I spent maybe hours with Wil on the phone, calming him down. He really wasn’t ready for it.

  4. Fictional heroines usually discover in the end that the Bad Boy has some socially redeeming characteristic, such as secretly taking care of a sick mother or some orphans, and is just temporarily stressed out. Vigilant comes from the Wild West of Wikipedia, where the only way to deal with disruptive individuals or Dunning–Kruger effect is by being mean to them until they go away. He is still somewhat stuck in that model, and he is also very very funny, even when no one wants to laugh at someone with a disability. That’s what happens with poor or non-existent moderation. Wikipediocracy used to be even worse, but their moderation has gotten better lately.

    “Robert” would likely be a representative of Jones Day. Hmm, Jones Day also represented the Trump campaign “In 2015, according to FEC filings, the Trump campaign paid Jones Day almost $250,000 in legal fees…If not for his and Jones Day’s efforts, Trump might not have made it onto the ballot.” Another example of the problem of Wikipedia’s political conservatism. https://abovethelaw.com/2016/03/jones-day-helping-donald-trump-to-make-america-great-again/?rf=1

    It’s not too late to get yourself a real lawyer, one who can explain to you the 5th amendment. If you want your above statement redacted, just let me know.

    1. Thanks for the advice. Having talked to Jones Day and dealt with them in other ways, I very much doubt that Robert is connected with them. This looks like classic Smith fishing for dirt. That model worked very poorly back then also. I will be consulting with a “real lawyer,” soon. I have no idea what the reference to the fifth amendment means in this case. As to redaction, thanks. Occasion for that can arise. I hope Wil is doing well.

  5. So here is a research question for the peanut gallery.

    What is the big thing with privacy with someone who has been terminated. You know an HR department will not give out ANY information about a former employee, other than the dates of their employment, and that only with a signed request from the former employee. This is supposedly because they can be sued for preventing them from further employment. So why is a volunteer employee any different in terms of privacy — or is it?

    1. Employers do not publish a “Wall of Shame” of all the employees they have terminated. Employers may, in fact, release information about termination, but it can be legally hazardous if there is no necessity, and if “actual malice” is involved, it can be defamatory in Massachusetts even if “true.” A major case we will be relying on is Noonan v. Staples. You can read about it in the Memorandum I’m drafting, there is extensive coverage of that and related cases.

      “Actual malice” in that context means common law malice, which can include negligent harm and one of the defenses is necessity. I.e, if the publication was necessary, that’s an argument against malice. I warned about the global ban process years ago, in discussions on meta. So it’s ironic….

      The WMF announces global bans, because . . . because they always have. There is no necessity. The whole policy sucks, as implemented, it’s an open invitation to harass people through coordinated complaints.

  6. Well, I have no clue about any of that, but since I posted a link to Abd’s go-fund-me I suppose I should offer to let you post one too.

    But about your other social media, on your Twitter account, I see you don’t seem to have a lot of female cryptids listed, in fact there is a “Dogman” and a “Loveland frogman.” So of course I am wondering about the Lady Cryptids and how your cryptids manage to reproduce and if there is some kind of cryptid Gender Gap sort of thing going on here. Also on your blogspot blog you say “The ancient Greeks had a myth about five successional kinds (ages) of mankind” but there is no mention whatsoever of any *womankind*, so of course since this is a Gender Blog I am starting to wonder what is going on here, beg your pardon if it is some new LGBLT2S+ thing, can’t seem to keep track of those, but just sayin’.

  7. I have learned not to trust that those who comment on blogs, etc., may not be whom they claim to be. The party line from Oliver D. Smith is straight Smith, as to message, but it might not be Oliver, it could, for example, be his brother, who does everything he can to throw a monkey wrench in the works. Or it could be some other enemy presenting provable garbage in Oliver’s name. If this is Oliver, “I’m listed for no reason” is blatantly a lie. Oliver was one of the complainants, and very likely lied to the WMF as he’s been doing for years, with many people. ODS on RatWiki was openly Oliver, and this edit may have been the first I knew that I was banned: https://rationalwiki.org/w/index.php?title=Talk:Abd_ul-Rahman_Lomax&diff=1930001&oldid=1929426. And then Oliver bragged about his mail from the WMF. http://archive.is/nqYIV

    Thanks for your concern, Gender Desk. Yes, someone who represents themselves in legal action has a fool for a client, but those who will not stand up for themselves simply because they are unable to get a lawyer are worse than fools, they are cowards or at least those who believe they are powerless, when they are not powerless. I’m blazing a trail here. $400 opened the door, and close to my home, not in San Francisco. They are making noises about attempting to move the case. That will likely fail, my opinion. This is not a suit under the TOU.

    It’s been claimed on Wikipediocracy that the WMF will “bury” me in lawyers, that they will sue me into poverty, to recover the cost of their expensive lawyers, and other very unlikely outcomes, Mendaliv knows what he wrote about. The key issue now is simply surviving the WMF Motion to Dismiss to that the case goes into discovery, which is where it really starts to get complicated. (And expensive, I will need support by that time.)

    Definitely, IANAL, but I have long experience with law and when I research a narrow topic, I sometimes know more about it than some lawyers. I will still make lots of mistakes, but this case does have what it takes to go forward. I’m drafting a response to the WMF MTD on the wiki,

    Yes. Right out in the open.

    … and if anyone cares, that draft memorandum of law in opposition links to case law.

    Comments are welcome and helpful.

    In fact, though, I will be requesting permission to amend the complaint, this time with far more precision of pleading, so the present MTD, if permission is granted (it should be, from many precedents) will become moot and also this response. It’s all getting tighter, but the WMF Motion is surprisingly deceptive on the law, in case people were impressed by all their citations. They focus much on Section 230 immunity, but I’m dropping Count 4, violation of implied contract, precisely because it would be difficult legally. The rest is not difficult. The WMF is not protected by Section 230 for content it originated. And the precedent cases have been cherry-picked by the WMF, those same cases provide ample legal theory and almost exact precedent to proceed.

    If people want to see that implied contract claim, it would far better be a class-action suit, not an individual suit like this. Lawyers and all. It’s possible, but not necessarily easy.

    So, I’m having fun. And I might die. This is called *life.*

  8. Thank you for the update, and the link, and especially the short explanation version.

    It’s all terribly confusing. It does look like there has been some impersonation going on, and I saw the confusion on Reddit a few weeks back as well. With all the Smith material you almost need a scorecard or maybe a dramatis personae. If I am reading it correctly, someone is claiming you published addresses and so forth about people, and sent harassing emails. For some reason I thought this was about the cold fusion community, or maybe some old Wikipedia criticism sites, but it looks like everything happened on Wikipedia or one of the sister projects, with perhaps the exception of the harassment stuff.

    I have no reason to believe this person posting the above comment as “Adblomax” is not the actual Abd, the same one as the lawsuit, even if the website contact is incorrectly listed as coldfusioncommunity.org instead of coldfusioncommunity.net, also that the Abd of the lawsuit is the same person in control of that website.

    I have no reason to believe the Smith person above posting as “Oliver D. Smith” is not the same person in control of the blog and Twitter accounts listed.

    So whatever impersonation might be going on elsewhere, it is probably not going on here.

    I’m okay with comments by anonymous people, but not with doxing – I will remove that – or with accusations against people, including specific WMF employees, without documentation.

    As far as I have paid any attention to the Wikipediocrazies, they seem to think it impossible to “sue someone into poverty” if they are there already. In other words, they think you have nothing to lose. Nothing financial, that is.

    It’s a pity people can’t just be decent without someone forcing them to do it.

    1. The harassment started as impersonation to defame, on Wikipedia, of “Blastikus” who now wishes for his real name not to be used. I confronted it and they began attacking me, with hosts of sock puppets. AP/D was attacking the user, being an enemy of anything “psychic” or “quackery,” the parapsychology resource on Wikiversity — which was neutral. No, I did not harass anyone. ODS (AP/O) emailed me, and we went back and forth. All that mail is on the blog. I emailed JPS, serial crazy namechanger, and offered to get the sketchy information about his name change and work taken down. I did that, including asking another web site to delete the information, and they did. the only reason it remained findable is that AP/D archived it. (And that activity created traceable IP/user agent, matching what was happening on Wikiversity and meta at the time, as I recall. I provided it to stewards privately.) That is what was called “illegal” by Vituzzu.) JPS called that email “harassment,” probably because I suggested that hiding was not a great strategy. The family “address” — really just a road they live on in the U.K., and the names and ages of family members, was up as a copy of information published elsewhere about them. I redacted it immediately, leaving only the names and ages of ODS and his brother. I never published phone numbers. This was about assisting web site admins, if they care, in identifying socks.

      So the WMF banned me for confronting their “valuable users” AKA Anglo Pyramidologist. JzG (Guy) ) saw an opportunity to get revenge for what I’d done in 2009, that led ArbCom to reprimand him. This had very little to do with cold fusion (and, yes, thanks, it’s .net. Brain fault.)

      The largest damage they did to WMF projects was to trash Wikiversity academic freedom. They lied. There had never been any disruption over cold fusion on Wikiversity, in over a decade. Wikiversity doesn’t do “articles,” except possibly as student projects, not in mainspace, if push comes to shove, but as attributed subpages under the main resource, rigorously neutral. Student work.

      It worked. Until Mu301 (who had been inactive and never had taken an interest in deletion discussions) made up an excuse, both to delete “fringe science” and to indef me, and to threaten another admin with desysop if he unblocked me (he had declared the intention).

      These are very, very nasty people, and, by a year before all this, I had realized that “community-managed” wikis are intrinsically vulnerable, unless they have protective structure, which few think is necessary until it’s too late.

      1. lol. The deletion of what you call the “parapsychology resource” had nothing with attacking academic freedom but the fact they’re pseudoscience. The person who wrote that junk who doesn’t want to be named isn’t even an academic (as you know). And Wikiversity deleted it for being pseudoscience.

  9. The discussion with Wil, on Wikipediocracy, was about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, which [Abd and anther individual whose name is redacted -GD] had diagnoses of. It's a bit misnamed. It is often associated with very high performance in narrow areas, but also with some level of social dysfunction. There are some respectable people with an idea that ADHD is actually older genetic hunter-gatherer adaptation, as distinct from agrarian-social, which became the majority. Magicians and Shamans vs Muggles and organized religion, etc.

    The Fifth Amendment has nothing to do with Lomax v. WMF. The First Amendment , i.e., "freedom of speech and the press," is relevant, and the standard principle is that if a statement is truthful, it cannot be defamation (which overturned the old common law, which allowed intention to harm as relevant) — but that "absolute immunity" isn't absolute, and especially not in Massachusetts, where, for private persons defamation, "actual malice" can defeat the immunity. And "actual malice" for public targets, is very strict, it must include "reckless disregard of truth," but for private targets, it's much looser, it can be merely ill will and disregard of privacy, absent necessity.

  10. Oh my.

    What a lot of words.

    Maybe a timeline (on your own site) would help. There is probably software for it.

    The link in your profile is still incorrect. I can edit it if you like – just ask – but perhaps it is something with autofill and the URL in your gravatar profile?

    1. The defendants (all of them) he lists have said Lomax is lying and that’s not at all what happened. Obviously though he disagrees and has his own view of events. All I can say is take what Lomax says with a pinch of salt.

  11. I can tell you that the Wikipediocracy ADHD discussion being referred to took place on June 14, 2014, if that helps…? I’m not sure why it’s relevant now, but it’s the Trump Era after all, so traditional ideas of relevance are pretty much out the window like everything else.

  12. Is everyone talking in riddles today… full moon?

    You mean why I redacted the names of two people with ADHD? I have seen both individuals discuss it publicly, but I have also seen some material suppressed, especially of minor children/relatives of both individuals, so maybe some of it is better not public. How do I decide?

    A medical diagnosis is usually private, so does someone with that diagnosis have the level of judgement to decide for themselves whether or not to disclose it publicly? How do I decide whether I am the one to decide?

    If someone wants to name themselves though….I suppose it’s relevant to both the court case, and to why Abd gets along on some forums and not on others. Also to why everyone assumes he has no money, as a disability entitlement in the U.S. is not that easy to live on. It might even have something to do with the global ban, and certainly not something the WMF could cite in their decision without a terribly terribly unfair invasion of Abd’s privacy.

    So I will restore Abd’s name since he has divulged the information himself, but the other name I will leave redacted.

    As for the rest of your riddle – Trump, relevance, June 2015 – not even google is giving me any clue. If you have a thread that is public, go ahead and post the link. If someone decides later to backtrack on information they have already made public, well, we don’t have to cross that bridge until we come to it.

  13. Trump? June 2015? What is this about? Ah, you mentioned Trump, because Trump retained Jones Day in 2015. Largest law firm in the U.S. And, no, they don’t send trolls to infest social media sites. Not their business.

  14. Okay, that’s all folks.

    As far as I can tell, this is about Rational Wiki and the Skeptics, and started out as a content dispute over whether pseudoscience and “original research” should be included in certain areas of Wikimedia projects.

    There are people who don’t trust the other criticism sites, but they will read me to find out what is going on. People should know about this court action. But this is not really a good place for a lot of back and forth.

    So thread closed, if someone wants to add something they can email me.

    Abd, I have edited your contact website, and the link now works in the comments, but not in the sidebar. If you mouse over the Abd icon under the comment section, you will still see the incorrect URL, so maybe there is still something that needs to be edited, either in the profile or at Gravatar itself.

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