It is with no doubt that the internet has grown rapidly over the recent years due to fast technological advancements, and has become a major source medium where people can express their views, opinions, social life, and even businesses. In particular, the rapid growth of the web has also facilitated advancements in social media platforms where people can meet and interact. However, we have witnessed increased cases of defamation of character on popular social media platforms.
With the strive to be the first one to publish content on social media platforms, sometimes users end up publishing content on websites that cost other people’s reputation and life.
Characteristics to look for in content for defamation
What constitutes defamation of character? Not all negative comments to a person can be perceived to be defamation of characters. The statements must bring certain attributes to that person to be considered defamation of character. A statement can be considered to be defamation of character if:
- It may lower an individual’s reputation
Reputation is simply your image in the public. In other words, reputation is what the public believes you to be. This can be as a result of the business you are doing or services that you are offering to the public that can make people analyse you. Therefore, if somebody publishes a false statement about you that will affect your reputation in the public, then they have committed defamation of character on you. You should take the appropriate steps when dealing with such a matter.
- It may cause an individual or a firm to be neglected by others
Many stakeholders are involved in a business including consumers, suppliers, third parties, and other businesses. If an individual publishes content that will make those stakeholders avoid your business, then you have to sue them for defamation of character. The comments will bring down your business and cause great financial loss.
- It may cause violence to the person or the firm
In another instance, a person publishing a false statement about you or your business can bring about violence or hatred to you, especially if it goes against the norms of the society or even against another person. Therefore, you should look for a lawyer who deals with such cases to prosecute that person.
- It may discredit a person
If the false statements made will discredit you as a person or a business and make you worthless in the public, then it means that your character has been defamed and you need to take the necessary steps to ensure that you are compensated for such actions.
Is it possible to reverse a statement that may lead to defamation of character?
Having looked at the consequences of defamation of character above, it is clear that it can lead to a great loss to you as an individual or a business and you need to clear the mess so that you can continue with your usual life.
Fortunately, if you take the matter to a tribunal hearing and they prove that you have been indeed damaged by someone’s false statements, the judge will order the comments to be brought down immediately with an apology letter from the prosecuted person as you await your compensation. The guilty party will have to make it clear that they lied and apologise for misleading the public about a particular business or a person.