Anonymous Commenter Reveals Identity

Jul 24, 2012

A lawsuit in north Idaho over anonymous comments posted in an online forum attracted national attention. Now, the commenter at the center of that dispute has unmasked herself. As correspondent Jessica Robinson reports, the case reveals a rift within the north Idaho Republican Party.

Linda Cook of Rathdrum, Idaho, is a former congressional aide and long-time Republican campaign worker. Back in February, Cook made anonymous comments on a north Idaho blog hosted by the Spokane Spokesman-Review newspaper. Using the pseudonym “almostinnocentbystander” Cook asked a question insinuating that the chair of the local party might have pocketed $10,000 in party funds.

Party chair Tina Jacobson called for an audit and filed a defamation suit.

But Cook says she wanted to use the anonymous forum to address a feud over party expenditures.

Cook: “This was not just me lobbing insults at her. This was me trying to shed enough light on this situation that we could get some clarity about where the funds were going.”

Cook revealed her identity after a judge ruled the newspaper could not keep her anonymous.

Jacobson’s attorney says his client will decide how to proceed once the Spokesman-Review officially hands over the documents.

Copyright 2012 Northwest News Network

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