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  1. #1

    Can companies come after you if...?

    Sorry if I'm posting this in the wrong area, rather new here.

    Now, let's say I'm a pissed of customer/scammed victim. I get online and start posting about what the company did to me and so forth. Then, to really dig it in, I go on several web sites, like review places, blogs, etc., and continue to post a few things that I find 'interesting' about the company. They may or may not be true, but I would base my opinions based on sources, experiences by others, and general sleuthing.

    Can a company come after you for this? Obviously, many people post their experiences, but if you become a particular nag, can the company send lawyers to the little guy?

    I'm saying this because I have heard stories (which is how rumors get started...) whereas people are getting sued for this stuff. How would a company justify bad publicity from it?

  2. #2

    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    Quote Originally Posted by ExpediaLies View Post
    Sorry if I'm posting this in the wrong area, rather new here.

    Now, let's say I'm a pissed of customer/scammed victim. I get online and start posting about what the company did to me and so forth. Then, to really dig it in, I go on several web sites, like review places, blogs, etc., and continue to post a few things that I find 'interesting' about the company. They may or may not be true, but I would base my opinions based on sources, experiences by others, and general sleuthing.

    Can a company come after you for this? Obviously, many people post their experiences, but if you become a particular nag, can the company send lawyers to the little guy?

    I'm saying this because I have heard stories (which is how rumors get started...) whereas people are getting sued for this stuff. How would a company justify bad publicity from it?
    It depends on whether or not you are telling the truth.

  3. #3
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    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    I too have wondered about this.

    I have asked questions, done some research and it comes down to various things.

    It is wise to always say it is your experience or opinion when saying you feel a company scammed you or that they are a scam.

    Also it would depend on where you said what you said. It seems from what I have read chat boards would be a safe place to share your opinion.

    If they should decide to come after you they would have a tough time winning. Nobody would want the hassle of fighting this is a court of law. Please do not let the fear of a law suit stop you from sharing a bad experience with a company. Be smart. Be careful of the way you word your complaint, opinion or criticism of the company. Do some research. Read the law. If you are really afraid contact a good lawyer and see if they will review your concerns.

  4. #4

    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tulip View Post
    I too have wondered about this.

    I have asked questions, done some research and it comes down to various things.

    It is wise to always say it is your experience or opinion when saying you feel a company scammed you or that they are a scam.

    Also it would depend on where you said what you said. It seems from what I have read chat boards would be a safe place to share your opinion.

    If they should decide to come after you they would have a tough time winning. Nobody would want the hassle of fighting this is a court of law. Please do not let the fear of a law suit stop you from sharing a bad experience with a company. Be smart. Be careful of the way you word your complaint, opinion or criticism of the company. Do some research. Read the law. If you are really afraid contact a good lawyer and see if they will review your concerns.
    Good advise tulip. yb:

  5. #5
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    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    Quote Originally Posted by Old Timer View Post
    Good advise tulip. yb:
    Thanks OT I hope my post was of some help.

    I joined scam.com because I wanted to share my experience about a work at home company that I felt was a scam. I had done months of research and then paid out money and tried this company. The company and my experience was even worse then my original opinion the company was a scam. I was posting on another forum and when I tried to share my experience I was jumped and intimidated by a few women who were making a little money with this company. The word sue came up often. Trying to shut me up.

    When I joined this forum I was timid and had been pounded so badly I was afraid to speak out.

    This forum has taught me so much and I truly appreciate this forum and it's members.

  6. #6
    kimcf is offline Scams Beginner User Rank
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    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    I too have had a similar experience. I did some research on a company through various sources and followed up to ensure that the information was truthful. I shared this information with others through a few postings. Because I had complained directly to the company they were able to associate my posts to me, they proceeded to bully, bribe and then threaten me with a lawsuit. As a result, I panicked and asked all of my posts to be removed, even though they were truthful and could be backed up with evidence. I did speak to a lawyer and he indicated that I should have left my posts online as my evidence would have proven the truth. I realized that this was just an intimidation tactic to "shut me up" and began to post again. An employee of this company starting bullying me again and even exposed my real name on the site. A reputable business, will ignore any "bad posts" and let their reputation speak for them. In my opinion, it seems that those companies who have something to hide are the ones who will bully, bribe and threaten you.
    Last edited by kimcf; 09-12-2010 at 11:43 AM. Reason: wrong wording

  7. #7

    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tulip View Post
    ...It is wise to always say it is your experience or opinion when saying you feel a company scammed you or that they are a scam.

    Also it would depend on where you said what you said. It seems from what I have read chat boards would be a safe place to share your opinion.

    If they should decide to come after you they would have a tough time winning. Nobody would want the hassle of fighting this is a court of law. Please do not let the fear of a law suit stop you from sharing a bad experience with a company. Be smart. Be careful of the way you word your complaint, opinion or criticism of the company. Do some research. Read the law. If you are really afraid contact a good lawyer and see if they will review your concerns.
    Thank you. Judging from the nick I chose, its not difficult for a company to zone in on me. In a way, I'd like for them to try it. This isn't show business. Bad publicity is very bad publicity for them. After Valentines day and the review of Expedia at TechCrunch, I'm sure they would want to avoid it.

  8. #8

    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    Quote Originally Posted by kimcf View Post
    ... I realized that this was just an intimidation tactic to "shut me up" and began to post again. An employee of this company starting bullying me again and even exposed my real name on the site.

    Bastards. Isn't that a little... illegal?
    What happened after that? I hope you had the posts erased, and had this employee drawn and quartered.

  9. #9
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    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    There is no law (yet) on what you can or cannot say on the internet. Just look at what Wikileaks gets away with.
    '

    Cheers, Pokey

  10. #10
    kimcf is offline Scams Beginner User Rank
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    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    Quote Originally Posted by ExpediaLies View Post
    Bastards. Isn't that a little... illegal?
    What happened after that? I hope you had the posts erased, and had this employee drawn and quartered.
    I did indeed get the posts erased and I also did take a hard copy of what this employee and other employees posted. I think it is a good idea to keep copies of what you post as well, just in case.

    I also want to say that this company is now trying to change its name to continue taking advantage of people. They have registered a total of 30 domains for the one business. The only way to see what these domains are is to pay $140.00 for a complete report.

    It is so difficult to know if a business is honest or not as the laws don't really protect consumers from a company changing its name on a constant basis and not publicly registering these names.
    Last edited by kimcf; 09-13-2010 at 05:59 AM.

  11. #11
    kimcf is offline Scams Beginner User Rank
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    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    I believe that if you feel threatened about posting, you should try to get as many people as you can involved in discussions in a "chat". You can share your experiences and discuss options for dealing with these experiences.

  12. #12
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    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    I've got a bit of experience with this sort of thing, so I'll break the newbie-rule and chime in.

    There are a few important factors as to whether a company will retaliate against you and how they'll do it. Things to consider are...

    Who they are: Some businesses are so universally hated (cell phone providers, insurance companies) they won't even notice another slam against their reputation. Others (like marketing firms or retail chains) are very defensive about their public image. It also goes without saying that larger corporations have a lot more resources than the smaller guys, and will be more likely to take action.

    Also think of what type of action they're likely to take. If they have a history of suing and settling out of court, that's one thing. If, however, everyone who has ever spoken out in the past has mysteriously disappeared or died suddenly, that's another.

    Who you are & what you know: If you're a customer who feels ripped and writes some bad reviews online, no need to check for anvils above every doorway. But if you're an ex-employee, look out. Almost every company has things they don't want known to the public, and some will get really nasty in order to keep it that way. If you have "insider dirt" on a corporation, they'll be watching you. Many employers make their people sign confidentiality agreements, which are legally binding even after leaving the job.

    What you say: Exactly what you say, in fact. There is a difference between truth and libel, but any lawyer knows how to blur that line and use your very words against you. And if anything you print or post can be misconstrued as libel, it most certainly will be.

    If your words make you look like one of those nut-job conspiracy theorists, they'll probably leave you completely alone.

    Where you say it: The medium is the message, sometimes. If you post nasty words on an anonymous message board, that's different than appearing on the 6:00 news to expose a company's evil inner workings.

    You'll also want to keep in mind that there is no such thing as private information on the internet. Even if you e-mail something to somebody and they forward it to somebody else and so on, you'll still be held responsible for the words you wrote. That bites people in the butt all the time!

    Your assets and position: Not just how much money you have, assets also include anything you've got in your favour or that can be used against them.

    If (for example) they're mad because you're telling people about their shady sales techniques, they're a lot less likely to come after you if you also have photos of their CEO molesting small animals.

    It works both ways too, so first make sure they don't have any dirt on you!

    Just like the song goes: Know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em. And always make sure you've got more than two aces!

  13. #13
    kimcf is offline Scams Beginner User Rank
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    Re: Can companies come after you if...?

    You forgot one more "type" of company. A company who uses the justice system to file frivolous lawsuits to simply stop people from suing them in a civil claim and having the truth revealed about the company. Hopefully, the justice system tires of this and eventually will charge the company for doing so. Or, better yet, people will come together in one big suit and file a Class Action Lawsuit. This is much more expensive to fight than filing frivolous lawsuits against individuals.
    Last edited by kimcf; 09-23-2010 at 05:13 AM. Reason: grammar

  14. #14
    kimcf is offline Scams Beginner User Rank
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    Safe posting

    Based on my own experience, I thought I'd share a few hints about posting:

    1) Always post the truth
    2) Always have concrete evidence to back up the truth
    3) Always keep hard copies of this evidence (companies with something to hide are probably checking your posts and will change links and information)
    4) Check your motives - are you posting for the right reason i.e. to warn others?
    5) Have legal advice available - if you're not sure about something, ask a professional
    6) Be prepared - companies who rely on the internet for its advertising will do just about anything to keep from getting negative responses (I have been personally harassed, intimidated, bribed and sued)
    7) Know when to stop - you can't make decisions for people, you can only inform them. Know when you've given enough information.

  15. #15

    Re: Safe posting

    Quote Originally Posted by kimcf View Post
    Based on my own experience, I thought I'd share a few hints about posting:

    1) Always post the truth
    2) Always have concrete evidence to back up the truth
    3) Always keep hard copies of this evidence (companies with something to hide are probably checking your posts and will change links and information)
    4) Check your motives - are you posting for the right reason i.e. to warn others?
    5) Have legal advice available - if you're not sure about something, ask a professional
    6) Be prepared - companies who rely on the internet for its advertising will do just about anything to keep from getting negative responses (I have been personally harassed, intimidated, bribed and sued)
    7) Know when to stop - you can't make decisions for people, you can only inform them. Know when you've given enough information.

    Nice idea but try posting that on the political threads and see what they tell you.

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