Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

Judicial Notice of Internet Evidence — Gmail Functionality as Described on Gmail Website — Note: Gmail Allows Users to Send Messages with Another of Their Email Addresses Listed Instead of Gmail

McNaughton v. de Blasio, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13352 (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 4, 2015):

Footnote 10   One accusation raised in the portion of Plaintiff's opposition brief dedicated to the alleged "deletion or falsification of emails" (Pl. Opp. 6) requires a brief response -- if only to illustrate Plaintiff's knack for inferring sinister designs from the most benign occurrences. Plaintiff [*26]  directed the Court's attention to an email he sent to his cousin, Renee Colwell, in July 2007, which Colwell forwarded to Laura McNaughton roughly one hour later. (Id. at 5; see also id. at 35 (email attachment)). The substance of the email is largely irrelevant; Plaintiff instead takes issue with the email header, which reads, "From: on behalf of Renee Colwell []." (Id. at 35). Presumably as an example of how Laura McNaughton and others may be conspiring to falsify email records, Plaintiff levels a claim that this email chain is not what it purports to be:

   Plaintiff has used emails for many years and has never seen a forward like this. It's almost as if on July 10, 2007, the poor overworked City email application had requested help from the private sector to complete its tasks. Why wasn't this email simply forwarded to plaintiff's sister, 68 minutes after it was received, from Perhaps because it wasn't forwarded until maybe June of 2014, at a time when plaintiff's cousin no longer had her city email account, to provide an explanation as to why plaintiff's sister even knew of it, much less had it in her possession?

(Pl. Opp. 5-6). Plaintiff's conjecture [*27]  notwithstanding, there is a wholly plausible explanation of the appearance of this particular document, albeit one that is rather more mundane than Plaintiff supposes: Google's email service provider, Gmail, allows users to send emails from personal or work email addresses through its web-based interface. See Send Mail from a Different Address or Alias, Gmail, (last visited Feb. 3, 2015) ("Gmail lets you send messages with another of your email addresses listed as the sender instead of your Gmail address. This feature helps you manage multiple accounts from the Gmail interface[.]"). The Court may, and does, take judicial notice of this fact. Magnoni v. Smith & Laquericia, LLP, 701 F. Supp. 2d 497, 501 (S.D.N.Y. 2010) (noting that a court generally has discretion to take judicial notice of internet materials), aff'd, 483 F. App'x 613 (2d Cir. 2012) (summary order).

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