ComplaintsBoard.com began way back in 2004 and is one of the oldest customer complaint websites in the world. It is free to use and individuals can post anonymous complaints about individuals and companies for others to see and read.
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What is ComplaintsBoard?
ComplaintsBoard.com is a popular online platform you can use to post complaints related to specific businesses in an effort to get a response from the company. Not only does it help people receive the help they may need with a problem a company, but it also helps others know whether they should trust a particular company.
Some of the most common customer complaints include:
- Long Wait Times While on Hold with Customer Service or Sales
- Product Unavailability / Out of Stock Products
- Shipping Delays
- Poor Products / Bad Service
- Disinterested Customer Service Representatives
- Weak Followup / No Followup at All
What is Online Defamation / Cyber Libel?
Online defamation is the action of sharing false and unprivileged statements to harm someone’s reputation. Defamation can take place via e-mail, message boards, blogs, chatrooms, and on Web sites, such as ComplaintsBoard.com.
According to recent research about the impact of online reviews, one negative review drives away 22% of prospects, around 30 customers. Three negative reviews drive away customers by 59.2%. More than four negative reviews increase your lost customers to 70%. However, not all negative reviews are considered online defamation or cyber libel.
For a complaint to qualify as online defamation (also called cyber libel), it would need to include a false statement of fact that harms the reputation of the business. You must prove how the statements hurt your reputation. If the allegations are true, although they may be embarrassing or harmful to your business, the truth is an absolute defense.
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.
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act protects freedom of expression and innovation on the Internet. Internet Service Providers and Website owners are generally protected from legal liability for content posted by others. When the Internet first started, section 230 did not exist, and website hosts were at risk of liability for the content posted by others, and few companies would have assumed such as risk. We would not have Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Reddit without the protections outlined in the Communications Decency Act.
Why is it Difficult to Remove Content from ComplaintsBoard.com?
For damaging false or defamatory posts, ComplaintsBoard has taken the position that “[it] is not legally responsible for the complaints that are posted, even if those complaints contain remarks that are defamatory.” In addition, “No conclusions are drawn by ComplaintsBoard.com, as to content validity. ComplaintsBoard.com does not edit or censor posted messages or investigate them for accuracy.”
While you can hold the original poster responsible for his or her false statements, you would need to sue the individual (who has usually chosen to remain anonymous) and then present a court order to Complaints Board to compel the removal of the post.
This process may take a very long time and will often require the assistance of a qualified attorney.
Posts that involve copyright infringement may be easier to remove since ComplaintsBoard provides all their legal information on an easy to access page, as well as contact information for their DMCA agent. However, as described in further detail below, the doctrine of “fair use” may make it difficult to assert a successful copyright violation.
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, commentary, or criticism. When an image, video, or other protected content falls under the doctrine of Fair Use, anyone can use it as long as they follow the specific guidelines governing Fair Use, such as not claiming the copyrighted content as their own.
How to Use DMCA to Remove Copyright Content from ComplaintsBoard.com
An effective way to request the removal of a post from ComplaintsBoard that infringes on your copyright is to use The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and submit a DMCA notification to Complaints Board. A DMCA takedown notification informs the website that they must remove specific content on the grounds of copyright infringement.
You can use an attorney or an online reputation management company to assist with filing a DMCA complaint and submit to the designated DMCA agent for ComplaintsBoard.com for removal of the content.
ComplaintsBoard.com has the contact information on their DMCA page for their designated agent. A DMCA notice must generally include the following elements:
- Reasonably sufficient details to identify the work claimed to be infringed or, if multiple works are claimed to be infringed, a list of such works
- Reasonably sufficient detail to identify and locate the material that is claimed to be infringing (e.g, a link to the page that contains the infringing material);
- Contact information (for example, your address, telephone number, email address);
- A statement that you have a good faith belief that the use of the material identified above is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agent, or the law;
- A statement, under penalty of perjury, that the information in the notification is accurate and that you are authorized to act on behalf of the owner of the exclusive right that is alleged to be infringed.
- Your physical or electronic signature.
How to Remove a Post on ComplaintsBoard.com
ComplaintsBoard.com will not generally remove a customer complaint unless they receive an officially signed court order. A court order will require filing a lawsuit and a judgment against the individual(s) who posted the content on Complaints Board.
If successful, a valid court order would affirm that the content is defamatory and the court order would be submitted to Google and other search engines, as well as to ComplaintsBoard.com, which will remove the offensive content.
Reputation Rhino has an experienced team of legal, public relations, marketing, and technology experts and we can help you remove a post on Complaints Board — quickly and permanently.
Ask about our 100% money-back guaranteed removal service for ComplaintsBoard.com.