TWITTER AT YOUR PERIL
Be careful what you say in your Twitter posts.
Just ask Amanda Bonnen. According to recent Chicago Sun-Times article by Lisa Donovan, Ms. Bonnen was a tenant in an Chicago apartment complex run by Horizon Realty Group. Some water leaked into her apartment, as well as some other apartments in March, 2009. The leaks occurred after a contractor working on the roof made some mistakes. Horizon claims they contacted all affected tenants to assess and correct any damage. Horizon also stated that all tenant grievances were quickly and amicably resolved. With the exception of Ms. Bonnen. Bonnen filed suit against Horizon on June 2, 2009, alleging violations of the Chicago Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinance. She moved out on June 30, 2009.
After Bonnen’s suit was filed, Horizon learned of a May 12, 2009 Twitter post by someone identified as Amanda Bonnen and using the name “abonnen”. The tweet in question noted, “Who said sleeping in a moldy apartment was bad for you? Horizon thinks its okay”.
On July 27, 2009, Horizon filed a libel lawsuit against Ms. Bonnen, claiming the post damaged the firm’s reputation. Horizon has not spoken with Bonnen about the post. Jeff Michael, whose family has run Horizon for 25 years, commented that “We’re a sue first, ask questions later kind of an organization”.