Is An Online Review Poster Going To Jail?
A paid online review rabble-rouser is in deep poo over a Google Maps review. His name is Jason Page, he lives in the United Kingdom, and he made the giant mistake of leaving a fake review on the page of a Colorado-based lawyer, Timothy Bussey.
Well, it appears that Page was caught and is now out $50,000. He may have to spend some time in the clink, too.
Paid Online Review Sparks International Lawsuit
Page labeled Bussey “a scumbag” and accused the attorney of “paying for positive reviews.” Page also alleged that Bussey “loses 80% of his cases.”
Perhaps Page thought he was in the clear since he lived in the UK and Bussey in the United States. After all, who was going to waste time and money going after a kid, who still lived with his parents, over a lousy online review, right?
Page’s defamatory missive caused Bussey serious financial setbacks. People would read the online review and click away to another attorney. So, Bussey subpoenaed Google and procured information that led to the unearthing of Page’s real identity.
Police & Judge Don’t Believe Troll
When law enforcement officials approached Page, he denied culpability. The lawyer basher blamed his status as a sub-Reddit moderator for the mishap, alleging that hackers were exacting revenge for a decision he made in that role.
But the judge wasn’t moved by Page’s pleas. In fact, he called it “extremely improbable.”
Bussey has suspicions that Page may have been paid to leave the bad review, and he is continuing to pursue the case. So, if you’re guilty, watch out – sounds like Bussey is still on the hunt!
Online Trolling Is Illegal; You Could End Up In Jail or Bankrupt
Many people think that online trolling and writing a paid online review is perfectly legal. Still others believe that a VPN will protect them from being uncovered. Neither of these things is true. It is possible to unearth the names of anonymous trolls – even when they use cloaking techniques.
Now, not all trolls will land behind bars. But that doesn’t mean they won’t have civil legal actions brought against them. Even if individuals don’t engage in criminal activity or online stalking, they can still be sued for:
- Trade Libel or Product Disparagement,
- False Light Invasion of Privacy,
- Unfair Competition, or
- Tortious Interference.
Got Questions? Speak With An Online Harassment Attorney
Kelly / Warner Law has considerable experience with international Internet law cases. As a full-service practice, we handle claims in-house. In addition, we act as the U.S. arm for overseas firms that need assistance from U.S-based lawyers for various court order and motion needs.
Kelly / Warner has an excellent track record, and our attorneys are exceptionally knowledgeable about fake and paid online review legalities. Contact us.