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Act 61: Taubman "Responds" to My Discovery Requests

Since they couldn't wait much longer without violating the 30-day response requirement, Taubman responded to my discovery requests on February 1, 2002.

Well, "responded" may be too generous a term. Let's say that they sent me a document that they said was in response to my discovery requests. And it's a good thing that it was labeled as a response, otherwise I might not have been able to tell.

But don't take my word for it, you can follow these links to read their "response" for yourself (in a separate window).

Cover Letter

Responses to Interrogatories

Responses to Production Requests

A few observations:

  • Their "general objection" is that "No website (original or newer) are [sic] accessible at this time; accordingly these responses are based on Plaintiff's ability to remember these facts." In other words, they forced me to take my websites offline, and they might not be able to remember exactly what those sites contained, so they might not be able to answer my questions very well (as much as they'd like to). I guess they don't keep copies of documents that they submit to the court – because if they did, they could have referred to Exhibit C of their own first motion for an injunction, which was a color printout of my entire ShopsAtWillowBend.com website. Must have slipped their minds.

  • In response to each question in which I asked them to respond separately for each of my websites, they pretended that the question had six parts, cut-and-pasted the same non-response to each of those six parts – and then claimed that each "part" was a separate question, so I had asked too many questions! (The legal limit is 25.) They used this fiction as an excuse to not even address my last six questions.

    Oh, and by the way, why did they divide the questions into six parts? After all, I asked them to respond separately for each website – but as they know, I had only two websites. Well, it seems that they decided to answer separately for each of my domains, rather than for each of my websites! As they are well aware, five of the domains pointed to one website – and needless to say, their responses for all five domains were identical.

  • I asked them to identify all communications they had had about the case with anyone (other than their lawyers). They objected, on the grounds that the question was overly broad, burdensome, and irrelevant. I guess they forgot that they've asked me nearly the exact same question, and that they asked me to bring documents containing those communications to my deposition!

  • They claim that the information that I posted on my ShopsAtWillowBend.com website was "generally disparaging." This is absolutely, unequivocally, 100% false. (I had no idea that it was legal to make such blatant misrepresentations on an official court document.)

  • They've previously stated that my website contained inaccurate information, which puzzled me. Now they've finally identified this inaccurate information: It seems that some of the stores I listed on my website were not actually open yet! (I'm not making this up.) Also, they say that some of my links to stores in the mall were not correct, which is simply untrue.

  • Karen MacDonald, director of communications for the Taubman Company, has been quoted in print as saying, "We had received some comments and concerns over which was the accurate Web site for The Shops at Willow Bend," and that the lawsuit "developed from confusion coming from customers." Since Taubman has refused to provide any such evidence to me, either (1) Ms. MacDonald lied, or (2) Taubman is withholding from me information that I need to defend myself, and that they are legally required to turn over to me.

  • They say repeatedly that documents "will be produced" – but they didn't send me any documents! I didn't ask for promises, I asked for documents! They used up their 30 days, where are my documents? Why do they think that they don't have to follow the same rules that all other lawyers have to follow?

OK, I could go on and on... but let's move right along to my objections as I sent them to Taubman's attorney, Julie Greenberg...

Next: I Object to Taubman's "Responses"

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©2002 Hank Mishkoff
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