5 things you should do when faced with defamation
Whether you’re a child, adult, professional, or organisation, defamation can happen to anyone. Defamation is a form of bullying that can negatively impact an individuals personal and professional life, and an organisations reputation and trustworthiness.
When faced with defamation, the worst thing you can do is ignore it and let it be. Ignoring a case of slander is like walking away from wild fire, it will continue to rage on, expand, intensify, and leave a trail of destruction. Individuals and organisations need to stand up for themselves and tackle the offending slander material before it breaks down their reputation.
Here are 5 things you should do when faced with defamation. It is advised that these steps be taken in order.
Taking a screenshot of an offending online material that is causing defamation is the first thing you should do. This will ensure that the material is time stamped and it will provide you with the clearest and strongest evidence possible for your defamation claim. However, taking a screenshot means nothing unless you do something with it.
2. Seek family and friend support:
In almost all cases of defamation, the offending material is disheartening and negatively impacts an individual’s life. Some individuals may feel unsafe leaving the house, going to work, and some may remove themselves from all social media sites in an attempt to hide from the defamation. It would be in the victims’ best interests to confide in a friend or family member to talk about the defamation to their character. This would be beneficial as it would provide the victim with comfort and confirmation that the defamation material is something that should be taken seriously and acted upon.
3. Ask defamer to remove offending post:
When defamation material is sent via a social media platform or a google review in the cases where it affects a business, the individual or organisation should contact the defamer directly and ask them to remove the offending material if it is untrue and intended to cause harm. There is no harm in politely requesting this removal, the worst that can happen is that the defamer says no. In some cases, the defamer will remove the material. However, if the defamer refuses to listen to the request, it is appropriate to move onto to step #4.
4. Report to platform administer:
All social media sites have a terms and conditions policy that is intended to protect all users from online abuse. When someone purposely intends to falsely defame your character or ruin your business’s reputation, this is considered a breach of these terms and conditions and you are within your right to report this material. If this abuse continues to persist after this step, then its time to look towards the final approach.
5. Seek legal aid:
To seek legal aid may seem like an extreme course of action, however it doesn’t have to be as imposing as it sounds. Defamation2Go is an online legal service that can fight the defamation to your character in an easier, cheaper and less intimidating way. The process is simple; you complete an online form with evidence of the defaming material. Defamation2Go will then draft up a letter of a legal request to cease and remove defaming material, and then finally this letter is sent to the defamer. This letter is an effective way to cease the defamation to your character and allow you to get back to your everyday life.