ComplaintsBoard.com, like many other complaint reporting websites for consumers, has its problem with users who abuse the system. People underestimate the consequences of purposefully making a business look bad by lying and do not realize that there are counteractions the person or business targeted can take.
To help you deal with a fabricated post and rebuilding your now damaged reputation, follow this guide on how to remove a post from ComplaintsBoard.com and think carefully about your plan of action before making any attempts to remove the content.
What is ComplaintsBoard.com?
ComplaintsBoard.com is an online platform you can use to post complaints related to specific businesses in an effort to get a response from the company. It makes a great big open space for anyone to read about complaints and learn about common issues with certain services. Not only does it help people receive the help they need with a problem, but it also gives a heads up to people looking at using the same company. There is a lot to gain from using a website like ComplaintsBoard.com, but there are a few negative aspects that are unavoidable.
In the incident that a user of ComplaintsBoard misuses their platform to spread false accusations about a business, it could have a negative impact on the opinion of their clients. People see the bad complaints, and it makes them less likely to choose that company over, say, a competitor. You never know how complaints can affect a business, or if it will even have a negative result, but it is important to catch false allegations, regardless.
What is Online Defamation / Cyber Libel?
The law of online defamation defines the action of sharing false and unprivileged statements to harm someone’s reputation. Even though these false statements, when made, do not always come at a huge consequence to a business’s reputation, it will affect it a little, and that adds up over time.
Keeping up with the growth of a business falls directly in-line with maintaining a good reputation. People are more likely to become back as customers if they see mostly good reviews for a company and very little problems. It is especially harmful to your reputation when there are false rumors of a scam.
For a complaint to qualify as online defamation (also called cyber libel), it would need to have a false statement of fact that undoubtedly harms the reputation of the business targeted. You must prove how the statements hurt your reputation.
Some websites allow people to post complaints about specific persons, not just businesses, in which case online defamation would apply as well. However, on ComplaintsBoard, it focuses on businesses, products, and services.
Why is it Difficult to Remove Content from ComplaintsBoard.com?
The level of difficulty you have with removing a post from ComplaintsBoard.com depends on the reason behind the removal. Posts with copyright infringement are somewhat easy to remove since ComplaintsBoard provides all their legal information on an easy to access page, as well as contact information for their DMCA agent. We will help explain how to use a DMCA agent in another section.
For cases of online defamation, it can take longer since ComplaintsBoard requires you to go through a court of law and prove the defamation before they take any action against the post you want to remove.
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act protects freedom of expression and innovation on the internet. Because of how this section keeps internet service providers and third-party hosts out of trouble, their page users can post whatever they want. When the internet first started, section 230 did not exist yet, so website hosts were at risk of becoming liable for the action of people who post. Although at that time, there were fewer people on the internet, it would have been a huge problem now.
So, how does section 230 make it difficult to remove a post? The goal of section 230 is to make sure the person who owns a complaint forum (or any website for that matter) does not get into legal trouble for what other individuals post on their site. And such, most websites like to remain uninvolved with issues of the users unless those issues are causing the entire site to look bad and lose its reputation. Some websites, such as ComplaintsBoard, requires a court order for most instances because of this aspect.
Fair Use also protects freedom of expression. But instead of protecting the website host, it protects people who wish to use copyright content for creative reasons or commentary/criticism. When an image, writing, or another piece of content falls under Fair Use, anyone can use it as long as they follow the guidelines of Fair Use, such as not claiming the copyrighted content as their own.
When someone takes your content, for example – if they took it to use on ComplaintsBoard, they could call it Fair Use and continue to use it. But it is not as effortless as it seems. There is a procedure for determining if a piece of content qualifies as Fair Use. And if the person using it does so for malicious reasons, it is unlikely they will get away with calling it Fair Use at all.
How to Use DMCA to Remove Copyright Content from ComplaintsBoard.com
An effective way to request the removal of a post from ComplaintsBoard is to use a DMCA notification. A DMCA notifies the website that they must take down the content on the grounds of copyright infringement. You can use a legal expert to help you put the DMCA together, but then it must go to a designated DMCA agent, which depends on the website.
ComplaintsBoard.com has the contact information on their DMCA page for their designated agent, which is who you will send the DMCA to once complete. The notice must be exact with the requirements of a DMCA notice, so make sure to get a second opinion on what to include.
How to Remove a Post on ComplaintsBoard.com
To remove a post on ComplaintsBoard.com, the best thing you can do to lessen your stress during the process is to use an online reputation management service. Reputation management services, like Reputation Rhino, take care of all the hard work for you.
If you want a remove a post yourself, you should first look at what type of content is in the post and why you want to remove it. If the post talks badly about your business, look to see if they used any images that you own the copyright to or if the post makes fake claims about you being a scam. Either of those could be a way to get the post removed from the website. It all depends on the circumstances, just as it would for any other site.
All review websites, complaint chat forums, and scam reporting sites are different. ComplaintsBoard.com is one of the better complaint platforms to have to deal with because they are straightforward about what they require before removing a post. They also give good information on how to contact them and how to go about sending legal claims.
William Jones is an Online marketing specialist and consultant with more than 15 years of experience in marketing. His expertise in marketing includes website design, email marketing, SEO, blogging, PPC, social media marketing, and online reputation management for businesses.