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County Politician Kirby Delauter Says Paper Can't Print His Name Without His Permission. See How That Backfired Magnificently.

"Kirby Delauter, Kirby Delauter, Kirby Delauter."

Kirby Delauter thinks journalists need permission to use elected officials' names. (Image via Facebook)

If you haven't heard of Kirby Delauter by now, you're part of a fast-shrinking group of Americans.

That shrinking is exactly what the Frederick, Maryland, county councilman doesn't want.

Kirby Delauter thinks journalists need permission to use elected officials' names. (Image via Facebook)

Delauter took to Facebook on Sunday with a baffling demand: that a local newspaper not use his name without "authorization."

He even threatened to sue if the Frederick News-Post used his name in future articles without his permission — while simultaneously noting that he was refusing to speak to their reporters.

Delauter's legally laughable demand backfired in a spectacular way, with the News-Post publishing a response editorial that used his full name (Kirby Delauter) dozens of times while defending journalistic freedom and principles (for good measure, the first letters of each paragraph in the editorial also spell out "Kirby Delauter").

The internet took up the cause as well, with Twitter users rocketing Delauter's name to the status of trending topic Tuesday.

NPR even picked up the story.

The Huffington Post pointed out that Delauter was falling victim to the Streisand Effect — trying to keep information out of the press becomes a story in itself, giving more publicity to the information you were initially trying to suppress.

For the most part, Delauter's demand gave the average internet user a chance to flex their free speech muscles — and they relished the opportunity.

For anyone who's interested, here's the "hit piece" that got Delauter so riled up in the first place.

Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter

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