If I wanted to open a website that “bashes” a company what is the legal risk from it?

All information will be true, with names not disclosed. I intend to state it in a “in my opinion” point of view to let anyone who reads it know that this was my experience, not a fabricated story.

Asked on November 26, 2011 under Business Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The risk is two fold:

First, if you do make any factual assertions--even if you call them opinions--which may not be provably true, you may be sued for defamation. For example: say that the company is a phone company. You write that they made you wait "all day" for an appointment. Their service logs, howeve, how that they told you their people would be there at 1 pm and there were by 3 pm...since two hours from the projected time is not "all day," you may have defamed them.

Related to the above: even if you feel that everything you say is provably true, if there is *anything* they can argue with a straight face was not, then then may still sue you. Even if you win, they will force you to spend time and money defending yourself.

What are you hoping to accomplish here? If it is only to get some satisfaction, as yourself if that is the risk of  a lawsuit, even if it's one that you ultimately win.


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