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Your Facebook Status—“Served�

32164-rcm_2-2 Sheet No. 12 Side B

the proceedings to Mr. Howard’s attention;â€? they attempted contact at his known address, his parents’ address and his current girlfriend’s address before Byrne sent him a message through his Facebook page.66 Byrne asked for an order authorizing substituted service through Facebook. The application detailed not only the efforts at service through more traditional means but also provided the court with evidence supporting the reasonableness of the proposed form of substituted service. The magistrate’s ruling refers to evidence that Howard uses Facebook regularly, as well as a copy of +RZDUGÂśVSKRWRJUDSKDQGSURÂżOHIURPWKHVLWHVKRZLQJWKDWWKHELRJUDSKLFDOGHWDLOVWKHUHLQPDWFK the known information for Howard.67 In this manner, the court reassured itself that such an alternative means of service would not only go to Although there have been no the correct person, but that he would be likely to reported decisions to date view it as well. The magistrate observed that under the proinvolving substituted service visions of Division 6.4 of the Australian Federal through social media from Magistrates Court Rules, if it is found “imSingapore, its Supreme Court practicable to serve a document as required by the court rulesâ€? the court “may make an order has taken a forward-thinking, dispensing with service or substituting another pragmatic, and well-reasoned way of service of the document concerned.â€?68 The court also noted the factors that would view of the circumstances under be considered before granting an applicawhich social media would be tion for substituted service. These included: (1) whether reasonable steps have been taken HPSOR\HG,WVHUYHVDVDKLJKO\ useful blueprint for other countries to attempt to serve the document; (2) whether the steps that have been taken have brought to follow. the existence and nature of the documents to the attention of the person sought to be served; (3) whether the person to be served could become aware of the existence and nature of the documents through an advertisement “or some other means of communication that is reasonably available;â€? (4) the likely costs to the applicant in serving the documents; and (5) any other matter the court deems relevant.69 ,QWKLVLQVWDQFHWKHPDJLVWUDWHZDVVDWLVÂżHGWKDW%\UQHKDGH[KDXVWHGDOOUHDVRQDEOH steps to serve the documents through normal channels. He also noted that it was “highly OLNHO\´WKDW+RZDUGKDGDOUHDG\EHFRPHDZDUHRIWKHPDWWHUDQGLWVVLJQLÂżFDQFH7KH court pointed out the discovery that immediately after getting notice through Facebook, Howard took down his page and that “a similar process has been followed with the social networking site MySpace, where Mr. Howard also has a site.â€?70 Finally, the court observed that service through Facebook was not only “a cost-effective method,â€? but also “a means of communication which is reasonably available to all concerned, and as such, that it is likely to lead to a situation where Mr. Howard has become aware of the existence and nature of the documents.â€?71

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66. ,G 67. ,G 68. ,G(quoting A USTL . F ED. M AGISTR ATE C T. R. 6.14(a) (2011), available at http://www.comlaw.gov.au/ Details/F2011C00690/Html/Volume_1#_Toc301257294). 69. ,G(quoting A USTL . F ED. M AGISTR ATE C T. R. 6.15(b) (2011), available at http://www.comlaw.gov.au/ Details/F2011C00690/Html/Volume_1#_Toc301257295). 70. ,G 71. ,G

VOLUME 2, I SSUE 2

7/3/12 7:56 AM

Profile for The National Judicial College

Reynolds Courts & Media Law Journal, Spring 2012  

This issue of the Journal covers Facebook service, Judgespeak and more.

Reynolds Courts & Media Law Journal, Spring 2012  

This issue of the Journal covers Facebook service, Judgespeak and more.

Profile for njcmag
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