What are my rights in terms of a website/person putting up a “testimonial” on their website without my permission?

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What are my rights in terms of a website/person putting up a “testimonial” on their website without my permission?

In other words, this person took parts of my e-mail communication to him and used it as a testimonial without my permission (my privacy was invaded from this). I sent him an e-mail 2 days ago asking him to remove this from his website and have not heard from yet.

Asked on December 21, 2011 under Personal Injury, California

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You could sue the website/owner of the website for invasion of privacy.  One type of invasion of privacy is the appropriation of one's name or likeness for commercial purposes without consent.  This would apply to the testimonial in your case.

Your damages (the amount of compensation you are seeking to recover in your lawsuit) may include if applicable mental distress, physical illness, harm to your social or business interests.  These are examples of general damages recoverable in a claim for invasion of privacy.  Some may not be applicable to your particular situation such as physical illness and mental distress.  Therefore, your general damages should focus on harm to your social or business interests.  Punitive damages, which are a substantial amount to punish the defendant, can be awarded if a wrongful motive on the part of the defendant can be established.  Punitive damages would be in addition to your general damages.

 


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