M. Greto, Esquire Greto Law Jeffrey M. Weiner, Esquire David
E. Ross, Esquire R. Garrett Rice, Esquire Ross Aronstam &
L. Medinilla Judge
the Court's decision on Plaintiffs Amended Motion for an
Order Directing Facebook to Produce Evidence Destroyed by
Defendants. After consideration of all pleadings, the oral
arguments on August 15, 2019, and the last supplemental
response from August 28, 2019, for the reasons state below,
Plaintiffs Amended Motion for an Order Directing Facebook to
Produce Evidence Destroyed by Defendants is
and Procedural Background
April 15, 2019, Plaintiff filed a second request to obtain
evidence from Non-party Facebook, Inc.
("Facebook"). Both Defendant and Facebook opposed. On
July 15, 2019, Plaintiffs filed the Expert Report of Charles
J. Glasser. Oral arguments were heard on August 15,
2019 at which time the Court directed Facebook to respond to
the Glasser Report. Facebook filed a supplemental response on
contends that the Teamsters, or others working in concert
with, created a new Facebook page entitled "Bring the
IBT to FedEx Freight" and deleted the Facebook page
entitled "Bring the Teamsters to FedEx
Freight." Plaintiff claims that only Facebook can
provide the deleted evidence that he seeks, including the
identity, IP addresses, and information about the persons
with roles on the deleted Facebook page, as well as
identifying and contact information for the new Facebook
page. Plaintiff argues that he is able to make
the requisite prima facie showing under Doe v.
Cahill. This Court agrees.
Superior Court Civil Rule 26 generally controls discovery in
a civil case. "Parties may seek discovery of any
non-privileged, relevant matter, as well as information
reasonable calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible
evidence." However, Rule 26(b)(1) states that the
Court shall limit the extent of discovery if it determines
that, "[t]he discovery sought is unreasonably cumulative
or duplicative ... is obtainable from some other source that
is more convenient, less burdensome, or less expensive . . .
[or] is unduly burdensome or expensive . . .
."Furthermore, parties must "take
reasonable steps to avoid imposing undue burden or expense on
a person subject to [a] subpoena."
prior ruling in February, the Court denied a similar request
from Plaintiff, and agreed with Facebook that (1) Plaintiff
had not exhausted discovery from the Facebook page
administrators and (2) Plaintiff had not satisfied the
Doe v. Cahill First Amendment standard for obtaining
information about anonymous internet users.
counsel has since attempted to or has deposed individuals
associated with the Teamsters to obtain the identity of the
administrators and the person(s) who made the allegedly
defamatory posts. His efforts have been unsuccessful and the
Court finds that Plaintiff has exhausted all other avenues
available to acquire the requested information. Based on the
representation that the individuals he sought to depose no
longer have access to the deleted Facebook page, and the
substantive information contained in the Glasser Report, this
Court also finds that Plaintiff has sufficiently satisfied
the summary judgment standard under Cahill and
satisfied his prima facie burden.
Amended Motion for an Order Directing Facebook to Produce
Evidence Destroyed by Defendants is GRANTED.
Facebook is ordered to produce any and all available data
including, but not limited to: (1) non-content identifying
information (i.e., name, phone number, email
address, and an IP address) for the administrator(s) of the
Teamsters Page in 2017; and (2) similar non-content