Tyler Clementi and cyberbullying: how courts ruled in five other cases

The trial for the roommate of former Rutgers University Tyler Clementi will be watched by legal experts nationwide to see how the court addresses the growing issue of cyberbullying. Here is a list of court proceedings where cyberbullying or Internet privacy invasion was a key issue. 

3. Ryan Dwyer v. Oceanport School District (2005)

In April 2003, Ryan Dwyer, an eighth-grade student hosted a website on his home computer, called “I Hate Maple Place,” that he used to criticize his school and some of the teachers. He also enabled a comments section where some fellow students posted inappropriate content.

When school officials found the website, they suspended Ryan.

In December 2003, Ryan filed a lawsuit against the school district and its administrators with the help of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), claiming they violated his First Amendment and due-process rights.

In March 2005, the court granted partial summary judgment in favor of Ryan, and the parties settled in November 2005, with the school district issuing an apology and paying $117,500 in damages and attorney’s fees. 

3 of 5