Striking a blow for freedom of the press, worker’s rights, and the ability to make fun of your former boss on the internet, today NY-State Supreme Court Justice Wayne P. Saitta tossed out a defamation suit filed by Gorilla Coffee, which had aimed to seek damages against former employees and the New York Times.
You may remember our Gorilla Coffee coverage from Spring of last year – the entire cafe staff walked out due to untenable working conditions, a story the world heard first here on Sprudge.com prior to going viral via The New York Times, FIPS, Gothamist and Gawker – leading to several updates / golden opportunities for gorilla-based humor. Well, now this story has reached its zenith, its endgame; the Gorilla Coffee lawsuit banana has been peeled for the very last time. From Brandworkers, a New York-based legal non-profit dedicated to “ protecting and advancing the rights of retail and food employees”:
“Brandworkers is proud to have stood with these dedicated and talented baristas,” said Daniel Gross, an attorney and the organization’s executive director. “By speaking out against injustice and standing their ground against a bullying lawsuit, the workers have set a superb example for everyone dealing with unfair and arbitrary work environments.”
Congratulations to everyone for not being successfully sued, and for obviously lawyering up with the right non-profit worker’s rights legal team. Congratulations also to Oliver Strand, for being the first New York Times coffee writer in history to be sued by a pissed-off cafe. And thank you, a sincere thank you, to the ownership at Gorilla Coffee in Park Slope, for giving us more than a year’s worth of litigious, hostile hilarity. You just can’t make this stuff up.