Until recently, there’s been an attitude fairly prevalent throughout the Internet that people cannot/will not be held accountable for derogatory, slanderous, or libelous things they say in public chat-rooms, forums, and blog posts. The roots of blogging go down deep in the soil of adversarial discussion and heated debate, where white often fades into gray, and ocassionally turns into the blackness of personal attack.
Safe & Secure
We’re fortunate in industry-related platforms like AG, and even ActiveRain, to have the luxury of a more sedate, controlled environment. Discussions can often times become impassioned, but rarely does the call go out for back up.
Still, there are those who are under the notion that they can hide behind their monitors, cowering under anonymous profiles and bogus e-mail addresses, and unleash their verbal vomit without penalty.
Just recently, a real estate agent in Wisconsin made some extremely defaming remarks towards another local agent, a woman, in postings on one of the larger real estate networks.
“Book ’em, Dano!”
Unfortunately for the loose cannon, the folks up in Cheeseland take such things seriously, and a Judge ordered him not to practice real estate for 18 months. He was also fined nearly $2000.
Real Estate RoboCops
I believe we’ll only see increased legal action of this type as blogging and social networking in general become more prevalent. In addition, look for increased policing & prosecution of copyrighted images, one of the new cash cows for vultures/lawyers.
Could you afford to lose your license for over a year? Guess you could always join the Olympic Team at Home Depot!