Can you be sued for posting a negative review online?

I recently had a terrible interview experience for a company in the legal
industry and wanted most my negative review experience on Glassdoor. If I
do that, can the company or the interviewer sue me for defamation or
slander even though I wasn’t going to provide the interviewing attorney’s
name or identify the branch with which this experience happened?

Asked on May 3, 2017 under Personal Injury, Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Legally, it's only defamation if you make an untrue factual statement or assertion; a negative opinion is not defamation. So for example, if they kept you waiting for, say, 90 minutes before the interview, you can legally write that: it is true. You can also say it was the most unpleasant interview you had, since that is an opinion. But if you write that the interviewer told you he could not hire you due to your [race, religion, gender, etc.] when he did not, that would be an untrue fact and hence defamation. 
Bear in mind that even if your review is not defamation, the courts do not prescreen cases to see if they are valid before allowing them to be filed. So if the company or any person there is angry enough, they could file a defamation suit and force you to spend time and money responding, even if they ultimately lose. It is not a wise idea to potentially pick a fight with someone in the legal industry, who can likely sue very easily and who may be litigation-minded.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Legally, it's only defamation if you make an untrue factual statement or assertion; a negative opinion is not defamation. So for example, if they kept you waiting for, say, 90 minutes before the interview, you can legally write that: it is true. You can also say it was the most unpleasant interview you had, since that is an opinion. But if you write that the interviewer told you he could not hire you due to your [race, religion, gender, etc.] when he did not, that would be an untrue fact and hence defamation. 
Bear in mind that even if your review is not defamation, the courts do not prescreen cases to see if they are valid before allowing them to be filed. So if the company or any person there is angry enough, they could file a defamation suit and force you to spend time and money responding, even if they ultimately lose. It is not a wise idea to potentially pick a fight with someone in the legal industry, who can likely sue very easily and who may be litigation-minded.


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