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Defamation restaurant review
Defamatory online review against a restaurant
Restaurants are often susceptible for defamatory online reviews, which have the potential of bringing a successful restaurant business down to its knees.
Defamatory online reviews against a restaurant are often likely to also be posted out of malice. There is a law against malicious falsehood, which states that if a false information is posted with the intention to cause harm to the business, the business, in this case, a restaurant, might sue for an injunction and damages.
Most defamatory online reviews against restaurants are posted by competitors or on behalf of competitors. A smaller number of defamatory online reviews are posted by restaurant visitors who feel aggrieved by an alleged bad customer services which they feel had not been put right by the restaurant. Another group that posts defamatory online reviews against restaurant are former employees who feel disgruntled.
There are also restaurant defamatory reviews that are posted for political reasons against opponents.
The first steps for a restaurant who has been hit with defamatory online review is to assess whether the restaurant can live and accept the continuance publication of the defamatory reviews. In some cases, the impact of a defamatory online review might be so low, that it would be hardly worthwhile for the restaurant to take any steps other than encouraging loyal and happy customers to post positive reviews.
In other cases, where the impact of the defamatory online review is more significant, the restaurant needs to try and identify who the poster of the defamatory review is. This could be done by applying for a disclosure order from the operators of the review website.
This should be done together with attempts to have the defamatory review removed or deleted from the site. If the restaurant wants to pursue legal action against the author of the defamatory review, they should consult lawyers who have expertise in the field and who can advise thoroughly on the matter, based on their experience.
In nearly all cases, it is possible to have defamatory online reviews against a restaurant deleted, regardless of whether the author of the defamatory review can be identified or traced. In many cases, it is also possible to deal with a number of defamatory online reviews at the same time, in order to save time and financial resources in having the defamatory online reviews deleted.
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