Tried to upload a picture of the Review section in buyer’s request, Fiverr didn’t let me.
“In my opinion, Jerry is a criminal” you can’t be sued for defamation because “in my opinion” means you’re not stating a fact. This is why the newsmedia uses the word “allegedly” a lot. ”
The word “allegedly” offers the user of the word no protection against being sued for defamation or libel. By repeating the “allegation”, the news reader or journalist may repeat an an untrue statement about the character of a person, which could end badly for the news reader or journalist if the “allegation” turns out to be unfounded. The established legal principle of “He who alledges, must provide proof”, is the guiding principle here.
Neither does the term “In my opinion” offer any protection- If you utter an opinion, it must be based on some sort of experience, objective fact, or other credible, and testable evidence. If in “your opinion”, Jerry is a criminal, and it turns out he is not, you are in trouble. no doubt about it.
The only time where an “opinion” may not have consequences is during expert testimony, where say, a scientific principle is open to interpretation.
I am wondering what the potential damage here is. I have only ever done honest reviews and was completely unaware that I wasn’t allowed to do that. I saw that there were many others who offered the gig and always declined orders that didn’t agree to send me the product for an honest review, yet I am listed as a defendant. What do I have to expect?
The FTC doesn’t bother with nonsense like this. I used to have a payday client who was advertising “instant approvals” like everybody else, because the FTC only goes after the big fish, they told us we had to change it, so we changed it to “instant decisions.” That’s the kind of BS the FTC does. They harass decent businesses and make life a living hell.
Besides, Fiverr isn’t the only website where you can buy reviews. There are writer’s groups where people trade reviews. You review my book? I review your book. There are companies all over the world selling reviews.
Frankly, I think this is just a publicity stunt for Amazon, a way to get some press to increase awareness.
Well, Fiverr sellers could argue that they too are professional reviewers. It takes brains to write those reviews, specially when you want to write a review that sounds authentic.
Just because you get paid to do something doesn’t mean your work has no value. Ayn Rand teaches that reality is always reality, so if a book is crap and a writer pays for 20 positive reviews, eventually negative reviews will start coming. However, if a book is good, nobody will care if some writer paid for a few good reviews.
By the way, how do you feel about home stagers? Do you think it’s deceptive that realtors will hire a stager to make a home look appealing? Is it deceptive to photograph a house in a way that it minimizes flaws such as an ugly view? I don’t think so, it’s advertising. It’s the same reason the fashion industry uses lights and Photoshop.
So what’s wrong with writers doing the same? And by the way, why persecute the reviewers if you’re not going to persecute the writers? Why isn’t Amazon suing the writers? That’s like busting the drug dealer but not the drug user, both have committed a crime. Both deserve to be punished. Without the users, there would be no dealers. Without the writers, there would be no reviewers. Although frankly, I don’t see the crime in paying people to write positive reviews.
I’m just telling you what I learned when I took communications law. Libel suits against journalists are rare, specially if the “victim” is a public figure. Freedom of the press is sacrosanct in this country, this isn’t France where the paparazzi get sued for BS.
A journalist can be biased, and I get angry when they are, but it’s still protected under the First Amendment.
A review is opinion, it’s irrelevant whether the opinion is bought or not. Frankly, if Amazon hates book reviewers so much, maybe they shouldn’t let everyone publish books. I’m sure the big publishing houses would love that.
Oh really? So you want 1,000 reviewers going to jail? Seriously? Do we not have enough real criminals to worry about?
What reviewers need to do is get together and sue Amazon, hit them with a nice lawsuit and ask for millions of dollars for emotional distress. This is what evil companies deserve when they forget who made them, and who can break them.
I didn’t see any review gigs when I clicked your name. Did you deleted that gig? By the way, do you think you’re getting $5 for negative or 3-star reviews? Be careful, writers will be asking for revisions or refunds, or they might give you 1-star and lower your rating.
Well, I stated “If your product is bad, I will mention that”. Not that that would help against the stupid system were buyers can just order without my consent and I have to either fulfill or take a lower rating or that they can give 1 star reviews with customer service doing nothing, but If anyone
Expect to recieve a statement of claim through a courier or physically once Amazon lawyers find out your name and then user local server agency to serve you a Statement of Claim. Do not accept or sign for any unidentified courier.
The competition just got wiped out while the demand remains. Pretty smart.
As he’s German, he has very little to be concerned about.
There’s nothing wrong with ordering without consent, in fact, I encourage that. If I can’t do it, I refund it. That’s way easier than wasting time with the chit chatters. I HATE messages.
Are you available?
Do you do X?
Can you help me?
Are you there?
Jesus F. Christ, order already! LOL
I have extensively worked in this field and can tell you that there are global server companies which will deliver Statements of Claim (Legal Notice) first and then make multiple approaches for the record and documentation. As a German, he doesnt have much to worry about till the court establishes that notices were served and ignored and the defendant did not attempt to resolve the case with the plaintiff. Now, the trial will occur in absentia and court can come up with a fine. The final judgement will also be delivered and then Amazon may pursue the local courts (German) for remedy.
Amazon will have a very hard time proving damages. It is one of the most difficut things to prove in any juristiction, and the fact that they actually benefitted from fake reviews will not make it easier.
The only winners in this case will be the lawyers- unless the case is dismissed by a prudent judge, the lawyers can quite happily drag this out for years, if not decades, and collect millions in fees doing so.
Since you are in Germany you are out of the jurisdiction of American courts, which can order Americans to pay the legal bills and give Amazon the proceeds of any sales of their reviews.
The court in Seattle does not have authority in Germany.
reinier01 you have gotten the right answer. However Amazon is not asking for damages. It is asking to be given triple the amount the fiverr sellers earned from selling the fake reviews plus legal fees which will be in the millions.
Amazon references a similar case in April and uses this phrase “Amazon is continuing those efforts with this lawsuit against the individuals who provide those fake reviews.” Which means there could be others maybe not just on fiverr but other websites as well, this is ongoing. This will not be dismissed as those named have broken the TOS of Fiverr and Amazon. It is serious enough to define what makes a real or fake review.
This will be a very interesting case and will no doubt have the eyes and ears of other large websites watching. I also believe that fake video testimonials are going to be another case in future. If you do these type of videos, not knowing how it will be used, no disclaimer on screen, then you better stop. It’s no longer a joke.
I’m happy at least that this will wake some people up to becoming more honest as well as clean up the fiverr website.
On the positive side Fiverr should get a lot more traffic over the next week or so due to the publicity so maybe sellers offering other services will benefit