By Bill Wright
Commentator and writer Tomi Lahren has filed suit in Dallas County, Texas, against Glenn Beck and TheBlaze, Inc. (“TBI”). Judging from the complaint, the issues include the defendants’ continuing exercise of control over a Facebook account.
Lahren alleges that, after expressing her personal opinions on The View, the defendants stopped producing her shows and banned her from posting to the Facebook account or other social media. The contract attached to the complaint includes a provision that TBI had no obligation to use her material and only had to continue her Salary/Benefits. The complaint alleges that the defendants continued to pay her. Nevertheless, among other things, Lahren seeks a TRO prohibiting the defendants from interfering with her postings on any social media, including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Does the contractual provision that TBI owns all material Lahren produces as an employee, perhaps together with the defendants’ actual administrative control over the social media accounts, give TBI the power to block Lahren’s use of existing social media accounts and her access to the millions of people who clicked to “follow” Lahren? The answer to the complaint is yet to be filed, but we’ll keep an eye out for it.