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Hulk Hogan Sex Trial Against Gawker to Hear New Court Date in October

The trial probably won't start till next year.


Participants in Hulk Hogan’s $100 million invasion of privacy lawsuit against Gawker Media will discuss a new trial date on Oct. 20, according to the Florida circuit court overseeing the trial. That means it’s very likely it won’t start till next year.

Gawker successfully postponed the original July 6 trial date, giving it more time to obtain FBI recordings related to the case.

“We have the right to know the full story and are concerned because one of the tapes produced by the FBI … is incomplete while there is a serious irregularity in another tape,” Gawker general counsel Heather Dietrick said in a statement, referring to evidence for the trial that they hope to review.

The suit could put Gawker Media out of business and, more importantly, put a chill on the press’s ability (and willingness) to report on public figures. Hogan (real name: Terry Gene Bollea) sued Gawker for invasion of privacy after it posted footage from a video tape showing Bollea and a friend’s then-wife having sex.

Gawker, a private company, recently took the unusual step of releasing its financial details, a move that makes sense in light of Bollea’s claim for damages. Gawker made $6.5 million in operating profit last year, a 9.7 percent gain, on $44.3 million in sales, a 26 percent rise in revenue. The company also took out an $8 million loan with Silicon Valley Bank to move into a new 40,000 square foot office space in Manhattan that will house most of its 268 employees.

“With the possibility of an initial judgment against Gawker Media at the forthcoming trial in Florida, there’s been interest in the company’s underlying financial health,” founder and CEO Nick Denton said in a statement last week. “Our journalists and I stand for open discussion of true and interesting stories, and our finances have become part of the story. So we intend to be open about them, both in the media and in the St. Petersburg courtroom.”

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