Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

How Not to Authenticate Website Evidence

From Cook v. J&J Snack Foods Corp., 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 6905 (E.D. Cal. Jan. 27, 2010):

The website print outs at issue are attached to Nani Kim's declaration. *** In the first paragraph of her declaration, Kim states that she has personal knowledge of the contents of her declaration. *** However, Kim's declaration does not provide that she has personal knowledge of the website print outs that are attached to her declaration as exhibits. That is, she does not declare that she actually viewed the websites, when and how the pages were printed, or that the print outs accurately reflect the contents of the websites she viewed. While Plaintiff did not specifically raise the objection of authentication, personal knowledge is a necessary prerequisite. See Internet Specialties West, Inc. v. ISPWest, No. CV 05-3296 FMC AJWX, 2006 WL 4568796, at *2 (C.D. Cal. Sept. 19, 2006) (stating that "[t]o be authenticated, someone with [personal] knowledge of the accuracy of the contents of the internet printouts must testify."). "To authenticate printouts from a website, the proponent must present evidence from a witness with personal knowledge of the website at issue stating that the printout accurately reflects the contents of the website and the image of the page on the computer at which the printout was made." Toytrackerz LLC v. Koehler, No. 08-2297-GLR, 2009 WL 2591329, at *6 (D. Kan. Aug. 21, 2009). Since Kim's declaration does not demonstrate that she has personal knowledge of the website print outs, Plaintiff's objection to Exhibits J, L, M, N and O is sustained.

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