In Re: Zyprexa Products Liability Litigation

Response of James B. Gottstein to Order to Show Cause Issued at Behest of Defendant Eli Lilly & Company & Joinder in Request for Modification of Protective Orderxx

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EFF is defending the First Amendment rights of a citizen-journalist to link from a public "wiki" to electronic copies of damaging internal Eli Lilly documents relating to the controversial prescription drug Zyprexa. EFF's client, an anonymous citizen-journalist, posted the links on the wiki. Eli Lilly complained, and Judge Weinstein issued his order on January 4. Nonparties in the litigation have the right to link to publicly important information, and EFF has challenged this order as an unconstitutional prior restraint on free speech in violation of the First Amendment. Preventing a citizen-journalist from posting links to important health information on a public wiki violates the First Amendment. According to The New York Times reports, the Eli Lilly documents show that the company intentionally downplayed the drug's side effects, including weight gain, high blood sugar, and diabetes, and marketed the drug for "off-label" uses not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The documents were leaked from the ongoing Zyprexa products liability lawsuit, where Weinstein is the presiding judge. Copies of the leaked Eli Lilly documents have appeared on a variety of websites and other Internet sources. The links to the documents that were posted on the wiki were part of an extensive, in-depth analysis from a number of citizen journalists. A wiki is a website that allows many users to collaborate on its content, creating a kind of simple database for collecting information -- in this case, about the controversy surrounding Zyprexa. Zyprexa is Eli Lilly's best selling drug. Eli Lilly recently agreed to pay up to $500 million to settle claims relating to Zyprexa. This latest settlement brings the total paid by Eli Lilly to resolve lawsuits involving Zyprexa to more than $1.2 billion.

This is the response of James B. Gottstein to order to show cause issued at behest of defendant Eli Lilly & joinder in request for modification of protective orderxx.

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Published In: Communications & Media Updates, Constitutional Law Updates, Products Liability Updates

Reference Info:Legal Memoranda: Discovery Motions | Federal, 2nd Circuit, New York | United States

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