Welcome to The Blog Report

I'm so glad you stopped by and hope you find this blog an interesting read. I've been blogging since April of 2006, currently the author of six public and two private blogs. In the beginning I knew absolutely nothing about blogging. Over the years through trial and error, frustration and elation, and a few tears I've learned a lot. However, the learning process when it comes to blogging continues to evolve. Here you will find a hodge podge of my blogging experiences, useful codes and how-tos, sprinkled liberally with my opinions. Enjoy!

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Sunday, December 9, 2012

Be Careful When Doing Reviews

Oh my!  I do a lot of online reviews mainly on Epinion but also on my blogs.  Now Epinion pays me but I get no compensation from reviews on my blogs.  My opinion is just that, my opinion based on my experience with the product, restaurant or service.  So when I'm blogging about it, it's not like I take a different approach.  I'm sorry, but if we go into a restaurant and the service was cruddy, I have no problem talking about it on my blogs.  Well, apparently Jane Perez wrote a review on Yelp and Angie's List about her negative experience with a home contractor, Dietz Development.  He sued for $750,000 claiming he lost $300,000 because of her reviews.  A Virginia judge ordered Jane Perez to change her reviews because she actually accused them of stealing jewellery and they were the only ones with the key to her home when the jewellery went missing.  Now this is problematic for bloggers as the judge has already set the precedence.  However, he really only ordered her to change the part about the missing jewellery but she was able to keep her opinions in tack.  In her case, she could have omitted the fact of the missing jewellery or included it as suspicion rather than fact.  Seriously, how difficult would it have been to say in the review, they were in my home, had a key to my home and items went missing then letting the reader decide as to whether someone from the contractor's crew took the

As a blogger, I feel it is my right to speak my mind PROVIDING that I am not making false accusations, making libellous statements, resorting to name calling, promoting hatred or condoning illegal acts.   I'm usually fairly classy about any review to begin with because it can never be 100% good or 100% bad so I like to point out both the positives and negatives.  I also know I would not make an accusation unless I could prove it 100% so even if I had a strong suspicion that a contractor stole something from my home, unless charges were laid by the police and the firm found guilty, and likely not even then, I still would omit that from my review.

Bloggers do have to realize they have a great deal with respect to freedom of speech but they should not abuse this right.  As long as they are blogging under the TOS and AUP of their blog host provider and ISP, they really are free to discuss pretty much everything under the sun.  At the same time, bloggers do have to realize they can be held accountable for their words.  They can be sued and while in most cases it won't get far, it is just a hassle to go through.  Anything that can get you sued is more than likely against the TOS of your blogging platform as well.


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