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Ryanair takes Telkom SA to court to divulge user's IP address

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Ryanair takes Telkom SA to court to divulge user's IP address

Old 11th Sep 2013, 00:15
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Ryanair takes Telkom SA to court to divulge user's IP address

Long distance legal wrangling. No real surprise.

EUROPEAN low-cost airline Ryanair has obtained an urgent court order in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria to force Telkom’s mobile arm, 8ta, to help trace a person it accuses of harming its reputation on the internet.

Judge Francis Legodi ordered the fixed-line telecommunications operator on Tuesday to furnish the Irish airline with all information in its possession that identified or would help Ryanair identify an internet user using the pseudonym "alwaysflying" and an IP address in South Africa.

Ryanair company secretary Juliusz Komorek said in an affidavit it was Europe’s only ultra-low cost airline, had 57 operational bases across European airports and carried more than 80-million passengers a year.

He said the airline had an unblemished reputation for safety in the past 29 years, while it maintained cost-effective flight operations in Europe and North Africa.

Mr Komorek said the airline became aware last September of several "defamatory and other derogatory statements" published about it on the websites PPRuNe.org.

The acronym refers to the "Professional Pilots Rumour Network", according to the website, where popular aviation topics are posted and discussed.

Ryanair said the website was subscribed to globally by pilots, journalists and other professionals, with more than 370,000 registered users, communicating through an average of 2,000 posts per day. It received nearly a million visitors a month.

Mr Komorek said the airline had instructed the Los Angeles-based law firm Holland & Knight LLP to file libel proceedings against a number of unidentified defendants — suing them as "John Does (1-100) — in the Los Angeles Superior Court.

Holland & Knight was also instructed to seek and obtain a subpoena against Internet Brands, the California-registered owner of the PPRuNe website, to establish the real names of the defendants.

On receipt of data, further subpoenas were obtained against parties such as Yahoo, Microsoft and Google.

Ryanair appointed a specialist consultancy company, Word to the Wise, to analyse the information received, and the company was able to identify from which IP addresses the posts were made. The addresses included two Irish companies, BT in the UK and 8ta in South Africa.

Its investigation revealed the user "alwaysflying" had made 20 posts about Ryanair on the website.

Mr Komorek described one post as "particularly offensive and damaging" as it "falsely portrayed Ryanair to the general public as having incompetent flying crew", which could seriously affect the airline’s reputation and business.

The comment, which was posted under the headline "Poor airmanship", read: "I don’t care if its wind/delays/weather or anything, if you are flying around your destination eating into your alternate fuel then you shouldn’t be a pilot. If they were employed at my company I would have fired the lot of them!"

Mr Komorek said the airline had already obtained high court orders in Ireland and had launched a similar application in Australia.

Ryanair launched the South African court application after Telkom at first failed to respond to its requests but later said its code of conduct relating to the confidentiality of clients precluded it from furnishing the information.

"The applicant (Ryanair) is concerned that it has suffered and will suffer reputational harm as a result of the posting," Mr Komorek said. "(It) has no objection to honest, objective, legitimate comment, but in the present circumstances stands to suffer increasing reputational damage as long as such wrongful publication remains on the website.

"Once in possession of the information, the applicant proposes requesting the user to take down the posting and to tender a public apology for the publication of any unlawful and wrongful statements."

British newspaper The Independent reported last month that Ryanair had dismissed one of its pilots, John Goss, for questioning the airline’s safety records in a television interview.

Mr Goss accused the airline of encouraging crews to minimise the amount of back-up fuel.

The newspaper said the airline had threatened to take legal action against Mr Goss for his "defamatory contributions" to the programme.
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Old 11th Sep 2013, 04:18
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That's the best way to get great publicity for the company. Fine everyone who speaks poorly of the company.
That'll shut them up!
Or just start posting from public wifi.
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Old 11th Sep 2013, 06:32
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That's the best way to get great publicity for the company. Fine everyone who speaks poorly of the company.

Hmmm... Hope you're just being sarcastic. Where does it end? These guys seem spring loaded to the offended position. Could you end up in court if you complain about the service on board? Some may regard this as another reason to avoid flying with them.
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Old 11th Sep 2013, 10:57
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MOL is behaving like a tin pot dictator, in a banana republic. Does not seem to recognise or take kindly to constructive criticism.

Real great for the free speech cause.
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Old 11th Sep 2013, 11:53
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No surprises from Douchebagair here, as usual.
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Old 11th Sep 2013, 13:47
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So what happens if you post from a public hot spot, or what I'm doing now, posting from a mates place?
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Old 11th Sep 2013, 14:28
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SOPS, I reckon you are still stuffed. They'll go back through your >1000 posts and track your real IP address down from some of those.

"Proxify" is your friend here, along with an alternate username.
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Old 11th Sep 2013, 18:00
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Poor old Ryanair, as always moderate in its requirements, courteous to its adoring public and considerate of the norms of the society within which it functions. In this latest venture however, it might have met its match for South Africa is no ordinary tin pot dictatorship.
Those who have had dealings with Telkom may be better in a position to relate the tales of harrowingly ghastly service that typify one of the great South African parastatals. Those who have had recent dealings with the legal system in South Africa might prefer not to discuss the pitfalls and forever changing exigencies of what some have called an utterly corrupt judicial system.
One reported example might suffice, a magistrates' court that last week required all documents to be lodged in violet coloured ink in a certain font where the week before black and Arial had succumbed to red and Roman? And all, or so the humorous story goes, because the chief magistrate's wife has dreams?
Ryanair should be pitied in its attempt to go head to head with South Africa and the ANC. All that is required now to utterly discomfit MOL would be a letter or two to The Star newspaper outlining the route Ryanair are taking and purporting to be written on behalf of a member of the previously disadvantaged whose only crime was to compare the ineptitudes of an offshore public transport company with those of PUTCO.
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Old 12th Sep 2013, 04:14
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Well what some dude on the internet said about them wouldn't have kept me from flying with them..... but their childish cry baby over reaction to some internet board post... well that makes me question their priority and decision making skills as a company.

Add me to the list of people that wont be flying with them.
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Old 12th Sep 2013, 07:17
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Just the sort of reactions that MOL is getting at. I'd say he is right (this time) - begrudgers - is the Irish word for the majority of the posters. Why shouldn't RyR protect its reputation?

MOL is a nasty piece of work, anti-union, anti-regulation, pro capitalism, etc., etc., but he is employed to protect the interests of RyR.

Its just too easy for people with a chip on their shoulder to make comments about anybody or anything on fora, this case is a warning shot.

I see that they have identified 'always flying' and are suing him/her.
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Old 14th Sep 2013, 10:41
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You lot have almost all fallen for it hook, line and sinker. A very recent quote was along the lines of "Short of murder, negative publicity sells more seats than positive publicity". And so many of you are perpetuating that negative publicity for him!! The cost of initiating that court action in SA (win or lose will be rather irrelevant) is a tiny fraction of paying for publicity through any advertising or 'PR' processes. The publicity gained (and primarily because of how it stirs people up!) is immense. People in SA who might never have heard of the airline will now know about it and if and when they travel to Europe are now more likely to look into using them for their travel plans. No advertising would have ensured that. And for every one that says "Add me to the list of people that wont be flying with them", a dozen or so will think 'who is this airline', look them up on the internet and think 'wow, their tickets are cheap' and consider flying with them. Job done. And all of you who publicly rant about him are willing participants in the Michael O'Leary publicity campaign...
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Old 18th Sep 2013, 09:41
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Ryanair in the South African courts

From BEELD
Beeld : Always flying moet pasop

Always flying moet pasop

Redery wil weet wie hom slegsê

Jeanne-Marié Versluis
Dinsdag 10 September 2013

Die Europese lugdiens Ryanair het ’n hofbevel teen Telkom SA verkry sodat hy kan vasstel wie in Suid-Afrika hom onder ’n skuilnaam op die internet belaster.

Die hooggeregshof in Pretoria het Telkom gister beveel om alle inligting in sy besit aan Ryanair te gee wat dié sal help om die internetgebruiker, wat die skuilnaam “always flying” gebruik, te identifiseer.

Die lugdiens, wat vlugte na 29 lande in Europa en Noord-Afrika onderneem, sê in hofstukke hy het ’n vlekkelose aansien vir veiligheid die afgelope 29 jaar.

Hy het in September 2012 bewus geword van “verskeie lasterlike stellings” op ’n webwerf wat sowat 370 000 geregistreerde gebruikers het.

Vlieëniers, joernaliste en ander professionele mense oor die wêreld heen teken op die webwerf in.

Die gewraakte stellings is deur verskeie gebruikers gemaak.

Die lugdiens het ’n regsfirma in Los Angeles gekry om van die gebruikers op te spoor en regstappe teen hulle in die VSA te doen.

Die firma moes ook ’n lasbrief teen die webwerf-eienaar in Kalifornië verkry om die gebruikers se identiteite op te spoor.

Hierna is lasbriewe verkry teen verskeie derdepartye soos Yahoo! Inc., Microsoft Corporation en Google Inc. om gebruikers se ware name op te spoor.

Ryanair het ’n spesialis-konsultantmaatskappy, Word to the Wise, aangestel om te kyk van watter IP-adresse (internet protokol) die stellings gemaak is. Dit is vasgestel “always flying” se IP-adres is in Suid-Afrika en gekoppel aan die netwerk van Telkom Mobile 8ta.

Volgens Ryanair het dié gebruiker 20 stellings gemaak, waarvan een besonder aanstootlik is en skade berokken.

Die gebruiker het op 20 September 2012 ’n stelling gemaak wat daarop neerkom dat die lugdiens se vlieëniers nie behoort te vlieg nie en dat hy hulle sou afdank as hulle vir sý onderneming gewerk het.

Volgens Ryanair skets dié vals stelling sy vlugpersoneel as onbekwaam.

Ryanair wil die gebruiker se besonderhede en kontakadres by Telkom kry.
Sodra hy dit kry, wil hy die gebruiker versoek om die stelling te verwyder en ’n openbare verskoning aan te bied vir die publikasie van enige verkeerde stellings.

Ryanair sê hy het hard en lank gewerk om ’n goeie aansien in die lugdiensbedryf te verdien.

Translation


Always flying must watch out

Airline wants to know who is defaming it

Jeanne-Marié Versluis
Tuesday 10 September 2013

The European airline Ryanair has obtained a court order against Telkom SA so that it can determine who in South Africa is defaming it under a pseudonym on the internet.

Yesterday the High Court in Pretoria odered Telkom to give Ryanair all information in its possession which would help the latter to identify the internet user who uses the pseudonym "always flying".

The airline, which serves 29 countries in Europe and North Africa, stated in the court pleadings that had a spotless image for safety over the last 29 years.

In September 2012 it became aware of "various defamatory postings" on a website with 370,000 registered users.

Air crews, journalists and other professional people around the world have signed on to the website.

The objectional postings have been made by various users.

The airline appointed a law firm in Los Angeles to track down the users and to take legal action against them in the USA.

The firm had to get an order of court against the website-owner in California to track down the users' identities.

Thereafter orders were obtained against various third parties such a Yahoo! Inc, Microsoft Corporation and Google Inc to track down users' real names.

Ryanair appointed a specialist consultancy, Word to the Wise, to determine what IP addresses (internet protocol) were making the postings. It was determined that the IP address of "always flying" is in South Africa and linked to the network of Telkom Mobile 8ta.

According to Ryanair, this user has made 20 postings, among which one is especially repugnant and has caused damage.

The user, on 20 September 2112, made a posting which implied that the airline's aircrews ought not to be flying and that he would dismiss them if they were employed by himself.

According to Ryanair this falsehood depicts its aircrews as incompetent.

Ryanair wants to obtain the user's details and contact address from Telkom.

Thereafter, it wants to request the user to remove the posting and to make a public apology for the publication of any wrongful postings.

Ryanair says it has worked hard and long to earn a good image in the airline industry.
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Old 18th Sep 2013, 11:47
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Hey ho!!

And what would it have cost to arrange that level of publicity in Afrikaans 6,000 miles away using 'traditional' means of advertising!

(A bit of time travel into the next century there too!)

Last edited by Trossie; 18th Sep 2013 at 11:49. Reason: (Addition)
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 01:20
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Originally Posted by barrymah
......MOL is a nasty piece of work, anti-union, anti-regulation, pro capitalism, etc., etc.....
So you're PRO-union, PRO-gov't regulation, ANTI capitalism???

Are you by chance a communist??
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 15:38
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That was a very large leap of logic.

I am NOT PRO-union, PRO-gov't regulation, ANTI capitalism, nor am I a communist.

But I also think that MOL is a nasty piece of work, and I will never use his airline.
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Old 19th Sep 2013, 15:56
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One's politics are irrelevant.

I despise MoL's business practices and the way he treats his customers and staff. I admire him for his outspoken approach and for not giving a stuff about what others think. I respect him for running what is probably the world's most profitable and successful airline. From a business perspective, I think he's a scumbag, on a personal level, he's probably very likeable.

I will never travel on his airline. In a couple of weeks, I have to travel from Derby to Barcelona. FR have a flight at exactly the right time, from EMA which is 15 minutes from Derby, for less than £20 (++++++++ of course). The next most convenient is Monarch from BHX at £80 (+), which also entails a 90 minute transfer to the airport.

If Ryanair paid me to travel on their flight, I wouldn't.
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Old 20th Sep 2013, 16:11
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Why do you so vehemently refuse?

Last edited by I.R.PIRATE; 20th Sep 2013 at 16:12.
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Old 20th Sep 2013, 16:33
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To fly on Ryanair is to be in very close proximity with rather large numbers of people with whom one would rather not be cheeking let alone jowling.
Mark 5: 1-13 refers.

Last edited by cavortingcheetah; 20th Sep 2013 at 16:33.
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Old 20th Sep 2013, 17:52
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You guys just can't help yourselves, can you?! Another 5 postings putting the airline's name to the top of the list on 'African Aviation' when that airline hardly flies to the continent at all! And another 100 or so viewings as a result. "No publicity is bad publicity" and you guys are definitely ensuring that the "No publicity..." bit of it doesn't occur! I wonder how many extra seats have been sold as a result?! Go on, admit it: you all have shares in the airline and are trying to promote it!! If you don't like it's 'petulant' behaviour, then maybe you should give them the treatment that most annoys a petulant teenager: ignore them!! But I just know that that won't happen...
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