According to BBC, Online retailer KlearGear has been ordered to pay $306,750 (£180,000) to a couple it has had a long-running dispute with over a bad review.
This case is an interesting one with the amount of merchandise in question being less than $20. However the legal costs probably run into the thousands if not more.
The case not only highlights freedom of speech and the ability to write online reviews on one hand but also the opposing viewpoint where the retailer argues that the customer wanted free merchandise or else they would defame them.
The intricate details of this case will probably never be know but the “extortion” angle could be valid and probably happens a lot more than we think it does.
An interesting question for our customers –
What would you do if a patient or client threatened to write a bad review unless you waived their copay or bill?
Physicians and Dentists probably will have a very different answer than lawyers.