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Man Forced To Pay $34,500 for Fake Yelp Review

Man Forced To Pay $34,500 for Fake Yelp Review

by HeadMaster
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It could be that this story has created a wild west for suing over fake reviews on Yelp and Google Places. My advice is that you should not ever post fake reviews about your competition because they could sue you and you wind up paying a lot of money to them and taking a reputation hit yourself. Focus on getting good reviews for yourself instead of obsessing over your competition. And if a competitor reviews your business and gives you a bad review on Yelp or Google Places, it is a conflict of interest. In addition to reporting it to Google and Yelp, you might want to have a lawyer contact them demanding it be removed. Again, that’s only if you know it’s a competitor and that the complaint they make is based on a fake event or experience.

This from the news.

QUINCY — A jury has decided that a Quincy Center jewelry store employee owes the owner of a nearby shop more than $30,000 for posting a false Yelp review about the rival establishment.

Adam Jacobs, an employee of Toodie’s Fine Jewelry, has to pay Stephen Blumberg, the owner of Stephen Leigh Jewelers, $34,500 for the emotional distress a jury decided that Jacobs caused by knowingly posting the false information.

Posted in August 2013, the multi-paragraph review detailed a supposed visit to Stephen Leigh Jewelers. The reviewer said he entered the shop looking to buy a 1.5-carat diamond engagement ring and had a generally bad experience. As a result, the reviewer said he would advise someone interested in buying jewelry or a watch to “go elsewhere.”

Blumberg’s lawsuit stated that the interaction never happened.

Reached by phone Tuesday, Blumberg said he figured out that “Adam J.” was Jacobs by phoning other businesses that “Adam J.” had reviewed on Yelp, which is a site featuring user ratings of stores, restaurants and other establishments.

“I did do research for several months,” Blumberg said. “I knew after two or three that I was right on the target.”

Blumberg filed the lawsuit in December 2013 in Norfolk Superior Court. In addition to suing Jacobs, he also sued Toodie’s, alleging that the store, owned by Jacobs’ father, was also responsible and was looking to tarnish Blumberg’s reputation. full story

It could be that this story has created a wild west for suing over fake reviews on Yelp and Google Places. My advice is that you should not ever post fake reviews about your competition because they could sue you and you could wind up paying a lot of money to them and taking a reputation hit yourself.

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