An ex-advisor to Toronto mayoral candidate Olivia Chow is threatening to sue a John Tory staffer over a series of tweets – including one with a link to a Beyonce song.
On Friday, a law firm representing Warren Kinsella turned to Twitter to serve notice to campaign strategist Nick Kouvalis.
The Toronto-based lawyer later took to his website to notify Kouvalis of the lawsuit a second time in a four-word post: Hey Nick, You're served.
Documents filed with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice claim Kouvalis defamed Kinsella in a series of tweets suggesting he was a negative addition to Chow’s campaign team and that they were “better off” without him.
Included were screenshots of tweets from Kouvalis' account from the previous day, one reading “@oliviachow to @kinsellawarren” linked to Beyonce's “Irreplaceable.” Another tweet linked AC/DC's “Thunderstruck” with the words “good riddance.”
The notice claims the music video tweets as defamatory.
“His conduct was high-handed and callous and demonstrated a total disregard for the truth or Mr. Kinsella’s reputation,” the document read. The file also labelled Kouvalis as a “known opponent” of Kinsella's.
The libel notice demands Kouvalis delete the tweets and publish an “unequivocal apology” in a “prominent and permanent location” on Twitter by the end of the business day on Sept. 3.
Kouvalis has yet to officially respond, instead tweeted a series of music videos including Johnny Cash's “A Boy Named Sue” and Cyndi Lauper's “Girls Just Want To Have Fun” on Friday evening.
This isn’t the first time Kinsella has made headlines this month.
Earlier, he drew attention after labelling Tory’s SmartTrack plan “Segregation Track,” saying it avoided two Toronto neighbourhoods with significant black populations. He later deleted his remark and apologized in a blog post addressed to Tory.
On Thursday, a Chow spokesperson confirmed to the Toronto Star that Kinsella is no longer involved with day-to-day operations with the campaign. Over a week ago, Chow distanced herself from the veteran political strategist by calling him a “volunteer.”
“Warren’s decision to step back from Olivia Chow’s campaign was his and his alone,” Lisa Kirbe told the newspaper in an email.
The same day, Kinsella published a column in the Toronto Sun, advising readers on how to deal with Internet trolls. Among the seven tips provided? "Sue them."
“Life’s too short – don’t let the deranged haters get you down!” he wrote.
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