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Author Topic: You can now get sued for writing a negative software review on a forum.  (Read 1822 times)

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Offline DJ Omnimaga

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Imagine if you had bought or downloaded a new game, software or anti-virus software and didn't like it. You found flaws in it and then you decided to write a review about it to warn people about the flaws. Then you posted that review on CodeWalrus, Gamefaqs or a computer-centric forum.

Well... don't do it with SpyHunter antivirus software. Why? Because you will get sued for libel: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/604046/we-need-your-help-bleepingcomputer-is-being-sued-by-the-creators-of-spyhunter/

And according to another post on that forum, Bleeping Computer is not the only website to get sued by the company that made that software for the same thing.

So yeah, apparently we now live in a world where using our freedom of speech to voice our opinion about someone else's software could get us on the wrong end of a lawsuit (in this case, the only alternative to paying the lawsuit is to relinquish your free speech rights and censor the negative review by deleting it)

This is the negative review, by the way: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/550005/spyhunter-vs-malwarebytes-vs-iobit/#entry3491488
« Last Edit: April 14, 2016, 05:39:49 pm by DJ Omnimaga »


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Only in murica™

It's not even a review, he is saying the truth about SpyHunter and how they are abusing their own customers.
Worst of all, you don't even need to be right or prove anything to file a lawsuit : you can simply say gibberish and threaten it.
Who has the money for a lawyer anyway ?

I think that's the reason (among others) why we should embrace retro-computing/gaming, you don't get stuff like this.
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Offline DJ Omnimaga

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Yeah it sucks that we can get sued for anything nowadays. I knew that shady software companies often wrote fake reviews about their own stuff but it sucks that some are relying on restricting free speech in order to not have any bad reviews. At least this particular lawsuit is more on the cease and desist side where the targeted person can get away with it by just deleting his negative review, but that's a form of censorship so I can totally understand that some people would rather fight the lawsuit.

As for your last point, I think that you can also be fine with non-retro, but open-source, public domain and community-made programs and games too.

I wonder if what SpyHunter authors are doing with customers is legal anyway. But sadly, if for example someone got billed twice on the Internet, then local law enforcement or customer protection agencies will tell you to not buy anything on the Internet.
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As for your last point, I think that you can also be fine with non-retro, but open-source, public domain and community-made programs and games too.
I agree, that's why i have since switched to Lubuntu, i have no regrets.

But with Secure Boot and the NSA spying, open-source might not be enough...
(I hate the fact that Tor users like me are being treated like second citizens by Cloudflare...)

Quote
I wonder if what SpyHunter authors are doing with customers is legal anyway.
They are holding their customers in hostage by telling them to pay them twice or more a month....
If that's not enough, their EULA is probably violating European laws due to the automatic renewal clause. (not sure bout murica though)

Quote
Nut sadly, if for example someone got billed twice on the Internet, then local law enforcement or customer protection agencies will tell you to not buy anything on the Internet.
Very true, especially in France wjere the govt scums ordered the police not to report those cases so they can "virtually" lower criminality.
(without doing actually anything)

And we are not even talking about copyright laws...
This makes me sick.
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Offline Jkolade936

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I actually got this pop-up when I went to that 2nd link in the 1st post:


And yes, you can get sued for anything now in "murica™." If someone breaks in to your house to rob you and breaks their leg on, say, a couch, they can sue you. And win. It's happened.
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Offline tr1p1ea

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I was surprised by the amount of litigation signs in the US when I visited a few years ago.

Image if this one got over the line?

Offline DJ Omnimaga

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@gameblabla the reason why Tor users are treated like this is because Tor has been abused like crazy to troll websites, hack them, evade forum and IRC bans so now many admins  bans anybody as soon as they show signs of using proxies, even if those users never did anything wrong. Kinda like Syrian refugee bans in some countries.

Also in Canada Bell phone/TV carrier are the kings of billing people twice. >.<

@tr1p1ea you should have come to Canada instead D:
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Yeah, there's a few legitimate uses of proxies and Tor, but at the same time it's also the illegimate uses. Kinda weird, yeah.

On topic, this lawsuit is completely frivolous. What the f***, seriously.
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Offline Jkolade936

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I completely agree. What is up with these people?  <_<

Is it funny that the person getting sued used this       ^same emoji ?
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Offline DJ Omnimaga

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Well, to be honest, it would not be funny if the company did not give them any way out, besides paying the lawsuit money.  Plus even in the current case, it's still bad because companies can basically try to restrict our free speech rights by bullying us with lawsuits. That way, this scares future reviewers from writing bad reviews about the software. I really hope that the streisand effect about the company's reputation takes over in the online computer community and news so that their reputation is threatened even more than by a small review. I mean, they won't sue 100,000 users and news channels, right? Perhaps there could be a way to make the company cave in that way.

Or the guy can just delete his review, the forum administration can modify their TOS to say messages on the forums are properties of their respective authors and they will not be held responsible for the content of them, then the review gets submitted anonymously, altered a bit. Seriously, I should probably edit the CW rules to clarify that.
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Offline Travis

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I wonder if anyone's told the EFF about this. They're all over that kind of abuse.

They helped us fight back against TI in the calc signing keys debacle some years ago. :)
« Last Edit: April 30, 2016, 05:43:25 pm by Travis »
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Offline DJ Omnimaga

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Hm I am curious as well. If I can't find anything on the attacked site indicating that they told the EFF, then maybe I could drop them a message as suggestion.

I wonder if moving their site to a non-American hosting provider could invalidate the lawsuit?
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I think this should be newsed. Also, is there a copy of the original review post?

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Wow, now not only the government is throwing our free speech laws away but now software companies... <_<
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Offline Jkolade936

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I know, right?  <_<
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