The Ohio man haunted his estranged wife through a shared Napster account and wandered around without changing the names of the playlists. Ohio Eighth District Court outlined the case In the judgment of 29 July tagged in twitter Author and attorney Eric Goldman. It’s an example of how metadata can become vectors of harassment outside of major social platforms — by repeating long-standing problems in other services like Spotify.
According to the court’s judgment, defendant Jacob Dunn admitted to contacting his wife through a Napster account to which both had access. The court had issued an interim protection order (TPO) against Dunn in 2018 and forbade him from contacting his wife by any means. But Dunn broke the order by renaming the playlists – one changed to “I want us to work. Are you? Do whatever, the other” I love you more than ever … do you still love me? “
Dunn did not contest the competition for aggravated intimidation and violation of the order, although he later tried unsuccessfully to withdraw and appeal his complaint. At the court hearing, he claimed he had not understood the rules of the TPO, despite the fact that they had explicitly approved them in advance – “unfortunately I realized a difficult path,” he said. The court records show that he was sentenced to probation.
Napster streaming service, formerly called Rhapsody. Like Forbes assistant Barry Collins has reported, Spotify users have complained that they have followers who can watch the listener and share playlists with offensive names. They have criticized Spotify for having set foot in protecting privacy and blocking tools.
In this case, there is a more unusual problem that most anti-harassment measures do not alleviate because it concerns two people who had agreed to split the account. (It’s unclear whether they agreed to share it after the resignation or whether Dunn’s wife simply considered revoking access.) It’s a clearer indication of how digital tangles can have unexpected drawbacks – even on a simple music playlist.