Usmanov and Schillings-watch: The web bites back.
Only MediaGrauniad and the Mirror (in the form of a Kevin Maguire blog post) have so far picked up on it from the MSM, but there's bound to be other pieces in tomorrow's press following the story up, especially considering that Boris Johnson has denounced the fact that his blog, set up by Tim and Clive, is among those to have been brought down by Fasthosts capitulation. Their claim that Tim and Clive had failed to remove the content in question is laughable; both Tim and Clive had more than accommodated Schillings' requests over what had to be removed. Quite simply, this had moved on from being a matter based on the posting of so-called defamatory material to a vendetta against the web-hosts. Schillings' problem is that it knows full well that Craig Murray has plenty of evidence to back up his original allegations, and the fact that they haven't served him personally with a writ, as he has requested, only proves the shallowness of their actions. They couldn't get the ball, so they decided to take out the men instead. Their reputation, backed up on their website by the laughable case studies currently being mocked across the "blogosphere", was at stake: too bad that they cared too much about that to notice that other well-known political figures were being hosted by Tim and Clive.
Indeed, if there was ever an example of blogging blowback, this is it. Dozens more blogs are now mirroring Craig's original post which started this whole mess; Arsenal fans and others who previously wouldn't have come across some of the unsavoury information about the possible future owner are now able to see him for the freedom of speech denying obese toad that he is; and the mainstream media itself, previously threatened before it had even printed a word about Usmanov are able to point their readers' in the direction of information they otherwise wouldn't have mentioned.
More pertinently to the legal side of things, it's understandably caused a commendable discussion about the ridiculous and discriminatory nature of our libel laws, now notorious for being a beacon for every tycoon, tyrant and half-wit with a grievance about an unpleasant article/book written about themselves to come and try their luck through our court system. Unity suggests that if any of us are ever called to serve on a libel jury, we move to return a not guilty verdict on the grounds that the law is an ass, as previously used during the Clive Ponting trial. Others are talking of a campaign along the lines of the current one over Iraqi employees of the armed forces. Others still are remarking on Usmanov's suitability to become Arsenal owner, should he succeed in an eventual takeover bid, something he's now raised the possibility of, noting the FA's recently adopted rules.
Now the cat's out of the bag, Schillings are going to quickly learn that it's going to be next to impossible to put this particularly agile, modern and digital pussy back in.