I came across a couple of funny blog posts this week reporting on class actions that are only slightly too outrageous to be real. Fundamentally Flawed fake reporter Brian Barrish reported on a class action filed against “a popular group known as the Christians plagiarized nearly all of their religious texts from earlier sources,” while The Nose on Your Face offered this satirical response to criticisms of Phil Gramm’s comment about the US being a “nation of whiners.”
These two entries got me interested in searching for fake news about other not-so-class-actions.
My number 1 source for fake news, The Onion, has published a number of great fake class action news stories over the years. Do a search on “class action” in The Onion’s archives and you’ll find summaries of such almost-cases as former child stars suing Nickelodeon for a mysterious chronic disease caused by green slime exposure, a case by obese Americans against “Big Chocolate,” a report on self-imposed cheese limits by fast-food chains fearful of class action exposure, a case demanding reparations against the major TV networks for hours lost to “inane sitcoms”, and many more.
Many fake news articles describe class actions that are unconfortably similar to real ones that we hear about in the news every week. You can get information about how to join this class action against the alleged causers of chronic halitosis from All Day Coffee, while National Nitwit describes a separate suit against the coffee industry for causing caffeine addiction. Meanwhile, this news from The Daily Redundancy about a barstool maker sued for its role in causing liver disease might have given an enterprising young class action lawyer some ideas.
The allegations in this class action by a group of kindergarten students against Merriam Webster aren’t entirely clear, but then again, neither are the allegations in many real class actions. From the Bentinal.
Do you think heavy metal music contributes to teen suicide? Check out this report from ClassyNews.com about a class action against Robert Frost for, inter alia, “reckless rhymes”.
The class action bar itself isn’t immune from ridicule. Plaintiffs’ class action lawyers might not find this entry from BrokenNewz.comabout a multi-billion judgment by consumers against the ATLA as funny as the rest of us, but maybe we can find some common ground with this story from the same site about a will contest class action filed by descendents of Triple-Crown winner Seattle Slew.
Some fake newspapers have even reported on suits against themselves. Lush for Life published this report in 2006 about a class action lawsuit that the fake newspaper itself was defending, which raises serious questions about a possibly much wider conspiracy and the very nature of existence itself.
Of course, none of these cases are possible after the decision discussed in my April 1, 2007 entry, Breaking News: Supreme Court Holds FRCP 23 Unconstitutional. That entry still gets a few page views every week, and I always wonder who’s looking at it. Maybe it’s a hopeful executive of “Big Chocolate.”