The company behind the forthcoming Phantom game platform, Infinium Labs, has stated that it may file a lawsuit against news website HardOCP over an article in September 2003 which cast doubt on the firm's real intentions.
The article revealed details of Infinium founder Tim Roberts' business background, including the bankruptcy of a number of his previous companies, and claimed to present proof that Infinium's offices were uninhabited at the time.
Now the company's new president, Kevin Bachus, has described the story as "false and defamatory" and stated that Infinium will file a suit for defamation against HardOCP if the story is not removed from its site within the next ten days.
Although Infinium is talking tough about this action - with a PR rep accusing HardOCP of spreading misinformation, while Bachus himself said that the "unacceptable" article "painted a portrait of a company intent on swindling the public" - as yet we have seen no details of which elements of the article Infinium believes were actually inaccurate.
A letter from Infinium's lawyers, Morrison & Forester, sent to HardOCP editor Kyle Bennett, makes specific mention of what the firm claims was an attempt to associate Tim Roberts with the bankruptcy of Worldcom, which happened after he departed from the company, but also claims that the article contains "a number of false and defamatory statements," without going on to expand on what exactly these statements are.
"I have extended HardOCP's pledge to correct any and all possible inconsistencies or errors in our editorial entitled 'Behind the Phantom Console' personally to Timothy Roberts and Kevin Bachus of Infinium Labs," according to Bennett, "and they have yet to inform HardOCP of any information we presented as being not correct."
Although Bachus claims that this action is necessary if Infinium is to establish a "credible and direct relationship with consumers," it's hard not to think that this sleeping dog might not have been best left lie. Infinium's credibility received a major boost last month when Bachus joined the company and further investment was secured - the wisdom of bringing the HardOCP allegations back into the spotlight at this point by taking a heavy-handed legal approach to a well-liked online news and community site is questionable.
Further Reading: [Beyond the Phantom Console - HardOCP, September 2003]