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Are one-star reviews defamation?

On Behalf of | May 15, 2023 | Defamation

Your company may rely on reviews for a lot of your business. Perhaps you sell products that get reviewed in your online store. Maybe your business simply gets reviews that show up on public profiles when people are trying to determine if they should contract you for the services that you offer. Either way, these reviews certainly help people decide if they’re going to work with your business or not.

That’s why it can be so frustrating when you get a one-star review. That negative opinion of your company is now public information for anyone to read. Because it’s negative, does that mean it could count as defamation? You certainly feel like it hurts your company and your earning potential because you may be losing sales if people are reading that negative review.

Does it contain factual inaccuracies?

This could be an example of defamation, but it is not in most cases. People are allowed to express their opinions, as is their right regarding free speech. If they did not like the products or services, they can certainly leave a review saying so without violating the law.

The problem happens when the review contains factual inaccuracies. If they’ve made things up or lied about your products and services, then the review certainly could be an example of defamation – especially because it is costing you money. But you would have to be able to show that the review was inaccurate, as it is not defamation simply to have a negative opinion of a business.

If you do believe that you have been victimized by defamation online, it’s very important to know what legal steps you can take to protect your business.