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ONLINE REPUTATION & BRAND PROTECTION LAWYER

IDENTIFY ANONYMOUS DEFAMERS AND CYBER ATTACKERS

DELETE DAMAGING CONTENT FROM THE INTERNET

Aaron Minc / 216 - 831 - 0042

How to Remove Internet Defamation

The Internet has presented an opportunity to democratize the spread of information. The advent and spread of the Internet has lowered the barrier to publication and participation in the marketplace of ideas more significantly than any invention since that of moveable type in the 1400s. While expansion of the ability to spread ideas is certain a net positive, there are always drawbacks that come along with the introduction of any new technology. While new communications technology can spread useful and relevant information, they can also be used to spread an array of information that most people would find undesirable.

The Internet is no exception to this rule. While it can be used to keep in touch with family and friends, to gather the news, and even to watch movies and listen to music it can also be used maliciously to spread lies, falsehoods, and distortions about an individual or a group. Unfortunately, as the power to spread information increases, so does the ability to spread defamatory materials meant to humiliate, embarrass, or shame. The Internet Defamation lawyers of Meyers Roman Friedberg & Lewis, LPA by calling (216) 831-0042 today. We offer a free consultation and guarantee that we will be able to get the post removed or we will return your money.

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Removal of Defamatory Postings from User-Generated Content Websites

User-generated content sites have been developed to fill a broad array of niches and interests. Facebook is likely the premiere general purpose social networking website used by family and friends. Other important social networking platforms where the majority, if not all content is provided by users, includes Twitter, Reddit, LinkedIn and many other sites. Furthermore, there are certain sites dedicated to consumer complaints, like ripoffreport.com and pissedoffconsumer.com. Similarly there are user-generated platforms that purport to offer a service to help others avoid unfaithful boyfriends and girlfriends. Prominent sites in this niche include myex.com, cheater registry.com, datingpsychos.com, and an array of other sites.

Many sites will work with concerned users who believe that they are the target of defamation or other wrongful conduct. Some potential strategies to remove a post from the source include:

  • DMCA takedown – If a person has used a photo created or taken by you, you can request the removal of the item. This can be particularly useful when a private photo for limited use is published widely by a party with no authority to publish it.
  • Work through law enforcement to remove child pornography – Most sites are willing to remove sexually explicit photos of individuals under the age of 18. While the procedures to remove the photos will differ by site, you typically must provide proof the nature of the photo.
  • Use of a court order – It is surprising to most, but sites are not required to comply with a court order to remove defamatory materials. Nevertheless, many sites will voluntarily comply making this a viable removal option.
  • Revenge porn – Many sites will remove revenge porn, however the burden is on the requester to prove that the content is actually what is purported. An attorney can assist in illustrating the nature of the defamatory materials and can cite any relevant state laws which may apply.

While there are options to remove defamatory Internet postings, it is essential to note that the sites that post the user-generated content are provided with broad immunity against liability through Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. While the law provides protection to the sites, individual users do not receive the same protections. In some instances it may be possible to have a site release the identity of the party who posted the defamatory materials. A victim of defamation can then pursue the original poster and litigate to hold the individual financially accountable for the damages that resulted.

Removal of Defamatory Search Result through a Service Provider like Google

In some instances the site may choose not to work with a party who is the victim of online defamation. While the justifications for this approach are numerous, many sites claim that it beyond their ability to referee or judge these matters. In some cases it may be possible to request Goggle to remove the search results provided that you have a valid justification for the removal. Google states that it will voluntarily comply with court orders that direct a third party to remove defamatory materials. Furthermore, in some instances and despite removal at the site level, the search result may continue to exist including a cached version of the page. When the site owner has removed a particular post, Google will also typically do so.

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However, it is important to note that removal from Google or another search engine’s results is limited to exactly what it sounds like. That is, while the result is removed, it may persist on the third-party server where it is hosted. However, the removal of the page from the search index means that it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to locate the defamatory information without a direct URL. Since search engines account for a significant majority of web traffic, removing its listing can significantly impact the visibility of the page and its likelihood to cause further damage to your reputation and standing.

Rely on Experienced Internet Defamation Removal Lawyers

If you are the victim of online defamation on a social media platform or on other sites, the experienced Internet defamation removal attorneys of Meyers Roman Friedberg & Lewis, LPA may be able to work to remove those postings or photos on your behalf. To schedule a free and confidential initial consultation call (216) 831-0042 today.