January 2, 2001, the United States District Court approved the settlement reached
by BlueOvalNews.com and Ford Motor Company. The settlement ends Ford’s lawsuit
against BlueOvalNews, filed in the summer of 1999.
Under the terms of the settlement, BlueOvalNews may continue to operate as
it has for the last 15 months.
In the settlement, BlueOvalNews has permanently accepted the restrictions imposed
by the district court in its 1999 preliminary injunction.
Under those restrictions, BlueOvalNews may not 1) solicit Ford employees to
disclose Ford’s internal documents, 2) may not violate Ford’s copyrights, and
3) may not infringe upon Ford’s trademarks.
“BlueOvalNews has never objected to these basic restrictions,” said managing
editor Steven Blake.
“More importantly, the settlement agreement clarifies that BlueOvalNews cannot
be prevented from publishing information, even confidential information from
Ford’s internal documents, that is ‘of public concern’.
“In this way, the settlement agreement fully protects BlueOvalNews’ First Amendment
right to publish information that is important to the public, no matter what
its original source.
“Because the settlement agreement fully supports the legal position taken by
BlueOvalNews since it was sued by Ford, we could not be more pleased with the
outcome of this lawsuit,” Blake said.