Commission seeks IDs of newspaper commenters

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - The Shelby County Commission has gone to court to get the identities of people who posted comments on a newspaper website in response to stories about Memphis suburbs planning to create their own school districts.

The subpoena filed in federal court asks for names, addresses and phone numbers of commenters, including those who had their postings removed because they were inappropriate.

The Commercial Appeal ( editor Chris Peck says the request is a "fishing expedition" and invades readers' privacy. Newspaper attorney Lucian Pera said he would fight the request by arguing that the subpoena infringes on the newspaper's work and the rights of readers.

Commission attorneys declined in an email to comment on the reason for the subpoena, which cites 45 stories dating back to Nov. 19, 2010.

Information from: The Commercial Appeal,

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