Comments on Web Pages Not Sufficiently Reliable For Cross-Examination
In a product liability action where the Defendant's product is alleged to have caused a fire, Defendant's expert testifed that there were no other reports of fire involving the Defendant's product at issue. To impeach the expert's statement, Plaintiffs sought to introduce customer comments from websites Defendant's products caused fires. Plaintiffs identified 5 such comments from websites such as amazon.com, pricegrabber.com and AVForums.com. Because the website comments did not involve the exact model number of the product at issue, the circumstances of the alleged fires were not described in detail, and the comments were anonymous, the court precluded the use of these website posts during cross-examination. The court noted that " . . . there is no reason to believe that, in deciding whether a particular product started a fire, any responsible investigator would rely on a handful of anonymous on-line complaints about other products made by the same manufacturer, so the postings have little if any probative value . . . "
MMG Insurance Co. v. Samsung Electronics America, Inc., 2013 WL 2444033 (D.NH 2013)