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Thread: Ex-employee ruining our reputation through posts on consumer complaint sites

  1. #1
    articjewelry55 is offline Junior Member
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    Ex-employee ruining our reputation through posts on consumer complaint sites

    We are a New York Based company selling jewelry on-line. One of our disgruntled employee who was fired is conducting extensive slur campaign against us on the web. He has posted many complaints (posing as disgruntled customer) on consumer sites like ripoff report and scaminformer. All these are posted under fictitious names . He has further embarked on a systematic campaign on the web to malign our reputation through videos , blogs and twitter.
    He also keeps sending e-mails to our current employees on their office e-mail ID urging them to move out from the company
    This guy is clever enough to keep his slander campaign to our company only. None of his e-mails or slander has any physical violence or alike. He also used proxy server to hide his ip.
    Would filing a suit remedy the situation?
    What recourse do we have?
    Last edited by articjewelry55; 04-13-2012 at 11:14 PM. Reason: spell errors
  2. #2
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    sounds like you need to expend a bit of money to see if you can trace his IP to some linkable point. If you cannot ID him, you cannot utilize the courts to stop him.
  3. #3
    You Are Guilty is offline Senior Member
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    And even if by some twist of fate, you could ID him, a lawsuit attempting to prohibit someone from saying something before they say it is a) ridiculously expensive and b) notoriously difficult to win.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tranquility
    Once you get to crazy land, it is only a guess on how to get out.
  4. #4
    articjewelry55 is offline Junior Member
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    why difficult to win?

    We are determined to take him to the court as we are sure about his identity and in some cases even picked up the ip
    If any one could help us with 1) why would it be notoriously difficult to win 2) how much expensive it would be
    One more issue: this individual in not an American ; he was an alien on work visa now he is shifted back to his native country sri Lanka
    So where do we stand? This ex-employee is conducting highly systematic, determined campaign against our company for last 1 year as he knows all the inside trade secrets . The campaign is so prolific that it is almost on the verge of shutting us down. We are in jewlery business and reputation is of paramount importance to us.
  5. #5
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    we are sure about his identity
    being sure doesn't prove it, in a court, where it has to be proven.

    and with him being in Sri Lanka, just what do you expect to do? I suspect you have no true recourse against him.
  6. #6
    articjewelry55 is offline Junior Member
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    Google wrote us back asking for subpoena

    Quote Originally Posted by justalayman View Post
    being sure doesn't prove it, in a court, where it has to be proven.

    and with him being in Sri Lanka, just what do you expect to do? I suspect you have no true recourse against him.

    So in effect what you are saying is anyone can resort to slander and libel on the net and we simply cannot do anything? Just watch our company shut down? We complained to Google to de-index slanderous remarks . Google wrote us back asking for subpoena. If we get the subpoena possibly Google will de-index it. But not sure how difficult or easy it is to get such a subpoena.. There may be 500-600 such slanderous pages on numerous consumer web sites
  7. #7
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    I suggest hiring a lawyer who can file a suit for you (especially since a corporation must be represented by a lawyer anyway and this sounds like more than a mom and pop operation). They can file a John Doe suit which would allow a subpoena to be issued to seek information.
  8. #8
    You Are Guilty is offline Senior Member
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    If he's not even located in the US, what do you hope to accomplish? A US court order is meaningless in Sri Lanka. I don't mean to discourage you, but to even get that useless order is likely going to cost you upwards of $25,000. (Which is actually a lot less than it would cost if he was in the US and defending the lawsuit.

    Incidentally, a subpoena, to Google or anyone else, merely asked for information/documents. It does not compel Google to remove or de-index anything.
  9. #9
    articjewelry55 is offline Junior Member
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    I am feeling helpless and frustrated there must be a way outů.

    Quote Originally Posted by You Are Guilty View Post
    If he's not even located in the US, what do you hope to accomplish? A US court order is meaningless in Sri Lanka. I don't mean to discourage you, but to even get that useless order is likely going to cost you upwards of $25,000. (Which is actually a lot less than it would cost if he was in the US and defending the lawsuit.

    Incidentally, a subpoena, to Google or anyone else, merely asked for information/documents. It does not compel Google to remove or de-index anything.
    Is there a way we can file a criminal complaint against him. Like with FBI-cyber crime division. We have already filed complaints with IC3.gov but with no response. We have also filed a complaint with Lanka embassy ; their response : go to NY law enforcement agencies and they cannot do anything.
    I would not have bothered if it would have been few negative remarks here and there. But this guy is conducting a very elaborate campaign. He himself is a SEO expert. I am feeling helpless and frustrated there must be a way outů.
  10. #10
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    what crime do you think he has committed?

    what you have described is a civil issue so either hire a lawyer to get the ball rolling or do your best to control the damage however you can.
  11. #11
    gator1 is offline Member
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    As noted, going after someone in Sri Lanka for cyber-defamation via lawsuits is for many reasons not worth the time, effort, and $$$.

    Consider redirecting your efforts to online damage control. There are online firms that specialize in countering the kinds of online attacks you are getting.

    Your efforts and money would likely be better spent on this type of damage control, with much faster results than filing a lawsuit.

    The following link is just an example, and by no means an endorsement:
    http://www.thereputationmanagementco.com/services/on-line-reputation/
  12. #12
    OHRoadwarrior is offline Senior Member
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    I will give my stock response, as I do to all who thought they would profit from hiring foreigners on work visas. When you suffer consequences such as trademark, copyright, process infringements or other negative things, when they return to their home country, ask yourself if you really got your moneys worth.
  13. #13
    articjewelry55 is offline Junior Member
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    Nothing we could have done even if an American worker

    Quote Originally Posted by OHRoadwarrior View Post
    I will give my stock response, as I do to all who thought they would profit from hiring foreigners on work visas. When you suffer consequences such as trademark, copyright, process infringements or other negative things, when they return to their home country, ask yourself if you really got your moneys worth.
    The responses what I am getting on this board tell that even if this worker was an American nothing much we could have done
  14. #14
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by articjewelry55 View Post
    The responses what I am getting on this board tell that even if this worker was an American nothing much we could have done
    true but it would be easier to do that nothing
  15. #15
    startedone is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by articjewelry55 View Post
    The responses what I am getting on this board tell that even if this worker was an American nothing much we could have done
    you have not detailed any causal link between business loss and the postings ... just the conclusion. You would need to prove this.

    You don't state anything specific..so there is not much more this forum can do.

    A NYC jewelry company? Ahh, that's a tough break.

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