Kos Media sued Research 2000 back in late June, after incendiary accusations by Markos Moulitsas that Research 2000 issued fraudulent polling data.
Now the parties have agreed on the “basic terms of settlement” which will require a “series of actions to be taken by each party” over the next several weeks. In order to finalize and implement the settlement, the parties have asked the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California for an extension of various filing deadlines in the case (emphasis mine):
The parties already have agreed on the basic terms of the settlement, which contemplates a series of actions to be taken by each party over an extended period of time. When Plaintiffs’ counsel alerted the Court to the impending settlement late last week, the Court requested that the parties file their stipulation dismissing the case by September 30, 2010. The terms of the agreement now being negotiated by the parties, however, contemplate the stipulation of dismissal being filed a few weeks later than September 30, 2010 which has prompted the request set forth in this motion for a 45 day extension of the schedule established by the Case Management Order.
Specifically, under the schedule now being negotiated by the parties, there is a deadline for action which falls within 30 days after the execution of the formal settlement agreement. After that deadline is met, the stipulation of dismissal promptly would be filed. As the settlement agreement is neither final nor executed, this first deadline will likely fall in early October.
I have calls in to both attorneys to see if they will elaborate on the terms of the settlement, but I doubt they will do so.
What is interesting is that the settlement obviously involves more than the mere payment of money. What kind of steps would take weeks to accomplish?
In this context, it would not be uncommon for some sort of action taken to limit the reputational damage to one party (Research 2000) caused by the accusations related to the lawsuit (here, by Moulitsas). Given the damage, I wondered in an earlier post whether Moulitsas had exposed himself to a counterclaim, and one way to avoid that would be a dance of sorts by the parties in which Moulitsas does not necessarily retract his accusations, but maybe chalks it up to a misunderstanding. This is my speculation, of course, but if all that was involved was a payment of money, counsel would not represent to the court that “a series of actions” needed to be taken before the case could be dismissed.
Kos Media v Rsearch 2000 – Stipulation Extending Time to Answer http://d1.scribdassets.com/ScribdViewer.swf