Barney the Dinosaur may seem like a lovable character on TV, but his lawyers are a different story. For years, attorneys for Barney’s owner, Lyons Partnership, have been sending cease-and-desist letters to Stuart Frankle because his Web site pokes fun at the purple dinosaur. Last Thursday, the San Francisco-based Electronic Frontier Foundation, or EFF, filed suit on Frankle’s behalf, asking the U.S. District Court to stop Barneys lawyers from harassing Frankel. “The misuse of intimidating cease-and-desist letters for censorship is a growing problem online,” said EFF Staff Attorney Corynne McSherry. “We hope this lawsuit sends a message to Barney’s owners and other corporations to think twice before sending baseless threat letters.” [EFF’s Press Release announcing the lawsuit] [EFF’s complaint along with copies of the cease-and-desist letters]

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