Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Defamation on the Internet: How to Report Defamation on the Internet

It is very easy to open yourself up to online defamation after writing a review or posting a comment on the internet.  When this does happen it is important to know how to deal with this and how to act appropriately to the situation.

Many websites have their own specific complaints procedure to follow when you have been defamed or harassed online.  You must follow these steps to ensure you achieve the best outcome.  Besides following the website’s complaints procedure it is advisable to write a simple cease and desist letter.  The details you should include in the letter are:

1.      The name and address of the sender or the notice.

2.      Name the details of the location of the information in question.

3.      List the details of the unlawful nature of the activity or information in question.

These 3 elements are the bare minimum you should include.  In some cases such as Amazon, victims of defamation are encouraged to use the pro forma which can be found on Amazon’s Notice and Procedure for Notifying of Defamatory Material page. This sets out the facts or circumstances that make it apparent that the postings related to them were unlawful.

Providing that you comply with all the pre-action protocol requirements you should be able to issue a Letter before Action and the website will take all the necessary actions to adhere to your request.  The court will also take in to consideration these 3 elements so be sure to list them clearly and as detailed as you can.

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