I’m sitting here watching the Hulk Hogan vs Gawker Media trial live online, and The Hulkster is actually testifying as we speak. I’ll come back later and post my thoughts on the day’s proceedings. I’ve just now started watching it, so I missed the opening statements and Hulk’s earlier testimony. I’ll post some recaps of that material down below later on.

(Lol, OK, Denton.)


More on this morning’s proceedings, from CNN Money

When Gawker published a portion of Hulk Hogan’s sex tape in 2012, the gossip site did so to “harm” the former professional wrestler.
That was the message from Hogan’s attorney Shane Vogt to jurors on Monday, as Hogan’s $100 million civil trial against Gawker Media kicked off in St. Petersburg, Florida. Hogan, whose real name is Terry Bollea, was dressed all in black, including a silver crucifix on a chain and his trademark bandana. He will testify later Monday.

In his opening statement, Shane Vogt characterized Gawker as an amoral news outlet, guided by the twin principles of “power and profit.” Former editor A.J. Daulerio, who posted the sex tape excerpts three-and-a-half years ago, is a defendant in the case, along with Gawker founder Nick Denton.

Denton’s editorial philosophy, according to Vogt, is to “level the playing field, to bring down people like Mr. Bollea — entertainers, celebrities, sports stars.”

“What we’re going to prove to you is that they intended to harm him,” Vogt said…

“The plaintiff’s name in this case is Terry Bollea. He is known professionally as Hulk Hogan, but the plaintiff is Terry Bollea, and he is a man,” Vogt told the jurors. “The defense may try to weave them together. He is a human being, he has imperfections, he has flaws, he makes mistakes.”

Plus The Hollywood Reporter

“[Hogan] will also tell you there is still a private side of his life, and that the private side of his life is even more important to him because there are so few places he can feel safe,” continued Vogt. “One of those places is his home and the other is his best friend’s house.”

Vogt attempted to re-tell Hogan’s life story from humble beginnings in a low-income neighborhood in Tampa to his role as “Thunderlips” in Rocky III to body slamming Andre the Giant at Wrestlemania to his recent health issues. “Celebrity is a very loose term that is thrown around,” he said. “Some people fall into it.”

As for Gawker, Vogt said it was no accident that the sex tape was published there of all places, noting Denton’s reputation and past commentary about what he likes to post. Vogt pointed to a Denton tweet where anything “true and interesting” became fair game and mentioned how Gawker had also covered nude pictures of Jennifer Lawrence and others. He portrayed the Hogan post as a form of “viral marketing,” and said the “higher purpose here wasn’t truth but rather money and power and an intent to harm.”

The trial is over for today. As Ms. Phillips said, we’ll pick back up tomorrow with Hogan’s cross-examination. The Gawker attorney was doing pretty well so far, but we’ll see what happens from here. Follow this link to see videos from earlier in the day, including opening statements.