What needs to be shown in oerder to sue me for defamation?

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What needs to be shown in oerder to sue me for defamation?

I was videotaped by the owner of my gym on his personal cellphone. He then showed it to a mutual friend. I called cooperate offices to complain. The next time I ran into him he yelled at me for a friend not joining his gym. Then he got my cell number and sent a text apologizing and offering free personal training. I have avoided him since and posted a review on a popular website. I am now getting letters from an attorney demanding I take the review down. The review says “the owner, Matt, videotaped me running on a treadmill and showed it to a friend. Then got my cell number and texted me about free personal training. Needless to say, I was freaked out”. Can he make me take this down or sue me?

Asked on May 9, 2012 under Personal Injury, Georgia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Defamation is the public making (so an online review would certainly count) of a false statement of fact which damages another's reputation. True facts are not defamation, and opinions (such as that you were "freaked out") are not defamation, either. From what you write, it does not appear that you have committed defamation, and you should prevail in a defamation lawsuit. On the other hand, is it worth the cost and headache of defending yourself, if the gym owner does sue--since it's almost impossible to stop someone from suing in the first place, even you can win the lawsuit--simply to keep this review up? It is likely that the better course of action would be to take it down and simply never associate with this person or his gym again.


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