A victory for independent local media

Somerville blogger Ron Newman writes that a libel suit brought against him, former Somerville Journal editor Deb Filcman and several others (including anonymous commenters) has been withdrawn.

Newman, who blogs at the LiveJournal forum Davis Square (“Think Globally, Whine Locally”), says that the plaintiff, Jonathan Monsarrat, filed a notice of voluntary dismissal with prejudice, which means Monsarrat can’t refile the suit at a later time.

In a classic case of unintended consequences, Newman’s lawyer, Dan Booth, lays out all of the alleged behavior that led to Monsarrat’s suit in this document (pdf). Scroll down to “Factual Background” for the entertaining stuff.

This is a big victory for local independent media.

Earlier coverage.

Solidarity forever

I don’t have the time or inclination right now to delve into the details, but you can click. (Start here.) I just want to note that Friend of Media Nation Ron Newman has been dealing with an extremely litigious guy named Jonathan Monsarrat, and that another Friend of Media Nation, Adam Gaffin, has come to Ron’s aid.

This is important for all of us who blog independently. Ron and Adam are two of the stalwarts of Boston’s online community, and they have my support. They deserve yours, too.

More: I’m moving this up from the comments. Steve Stein notes that a legal defense fund has been set up to help Ron and others associated with the Davis Square LiveJournal blog.

June 19 update: Newman reports that the lawsuit has been dropped.