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Court says negative yelp reviews shouldn't be censored

Court says no to censoring negative reviews, Yelp stands up for freedom of speech.

By Charles Gantt on Jan 3, 2013 06:37 am CST - 0 mins, 49 secs reading time

A Virginia court has lifted an injunction placed against a woman who left a negative review on Yelp and Angie's List of a contractor who had done some work on her home recently. The decision was pivotal because the previous decision had effectively censored Jane Perez's negative review of contractor Christopher Dietz without investigating if her claims were true or not.


The previous ruling stated that Perez had to remove wording from the review that mentioned missing jewelry, and she was to "re-characterize" the dispute between the two over non payment. An appeal by Public Citizen and the American Civil Liberties Union led to the court determining just two days later that "the preliminary injunction was not justified and that the respondents have an adequate remedy at law."

"It shouldn't be easy to take down speech that you don't like," said Paul Alan Levy, an attorney for Public Citizen. "You can't get injunction against defamation. If it's really defamation, you get damages."

Charles Gantt

ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Charles Gantt

A web developer by day, Charles comes to TweakTown after a short break from the Tech Journalism world. Formerly the Editor in Chief at TheBestCaseScenario, he now writes Maker and DIY content. Charles is a self proclaimed Maker of Things and is a major supporter of the Maker movement. In his free time, Charles likes to build just about anything, with past projects ranging from custom PC cooling control systems to 3D printers. Other expensive addictions include Photography, Astronomy and Home Automation.


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