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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50161
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I have an issue with an agency rating website all the

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I have an issue with an agency rating website all the agents. They are picking up our details for our online adverts posting an ability to add a review. We have three negative reviews which is regretable but our google reviews are much more positive. I noted yesterday these reviews appear right under our website on a google search and this is potentially damaging to our business. I have asked them to remove our details from the site and they have refused to do so saying its a freedom of information matter. I would assume as the business owner I have the right to refuse them to post any information of our business as its the property of the owners including our digital footprint.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

How long ago were the reviews posted?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Some reviews go back to 2014 but three are this year. The link is below and you can see the reviews appears underneath our company . On an ipad last night they just appeared under our name.

OK thank you, ***** ***** it with me. I am in court today so will prepare my advice during the day and get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Thank you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thanks I am talking to them on tuesday afternoon as they are trying to tell me how to use their site

OK no problem at all. I will get back to you at the earliest opportunity. Many thanks

Many thanks for your patience. It is untrue that as a business owner you have the right to refuse someone to make posts about your business. You do not ‘own’ information which mentions your business, for example this is not an intellectual property issue. Of course you own the registered name but that does not mean you cannot allow people to mention that name. You can prevent them from using the name to deliberately damage your business, for example if someone was pretending to be you and used that name to solicit customers instead of you. Similarly, if the reviews were untrue and potentially defamatory, as the publisher of these reviews they could have joint liability for defamation but it has to be a case of these reviews being untrue and not being able to be justified f being true or a person’s honest opinion. This would of course depend on the nature of the comments and their contents and it would be the best potential way of trying to challenge this, but not in a sense of making a court claim about it as this can get very expensive and complex in defamation claims. Instead, if you have evidence that the comments are clearly untrue and can back this up, you could use the threat of them being defamatory to accuse the ratings agency of potential joint liability for publishing defamatory comments and try to get them to remove this that way. If the comments are genuine and true, they are unfortunately allowed to publish them even if it makes your business appear in a bad light – that is unfortunately the nature of business and one of the potential risks – it is just more pronounced these days due to the digital age we live in.

I hope this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars - this is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you still need me to clarify anything else, please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. If this has answered your question please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars from the top of the page. I spend a lot of time and effort answering individual queries and I am not credited for my time until you leave your rating. If you still need further help please get back to me on here and I will assist as best as I can. Many thanks.

Hello, do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the above response? Look forward to hearing from you.

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
all answered thanks

Many thanks