Online reviews matter and can have legal implications - what to know and how to review in a way that protects you:

posted by Brian Mudd - 

Online reviews matter and can have legal implications - what to know and how to review in a way that protects you:

Bottom Line: It's been awhile since I addressed the responsibilities we have when we review products and services. There have been changes and legal clarifications that could impact you that have occurred recently. A law called "Consumer Review Fairness Act of 2016" included updated information for the handling of online reviews. 

In everyday life if you make false claims about a product or service and attempt to draw attention to the false claim to harm the business - you could potentially be held libel by the company if they pursued legal action against you. The same is true online. We all realize the impact that online reviews can have on products and services. We also know that many aren't legit. While commonly, false but positive, reviews have been the subject of online review concern. The opposite is also true however. 

There are some that have and do attempt to falsify negative reviews to harm a business. The law is clear and no different pertaining to slanderous conduct online. While many who attempt to slander a business, will do so anonymously, there isn't really anything anonymous about online activity. The law allows for individuals to be tracked right down to their IP addresses if needed. So be aware if this could be of impact to your business - that you have recourse if needed and it's also a reminder never to engage in non-factual reviews ourselves. There's a difference in actual opinion vs. false statements of "fact".

Brian Mudd

Brian Mudd

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