CBA Record October 2018
Y O U N G L A W Y E R S J O U R N A L
THE LAWYER AS FIRST-RESPONDER IN ONLINE COMMUNITIES Taming the Virtual Mob: Handling Negative Online Reviews By Neil P. Johnson
A budding business must maintain an online presence to compete in today’s economy, which makes it vulnerable to attacks by the “virtual mob.” This “virtual mob” punishes business owners by posting negative reviews memo- rialized on the business’ websites and social
newer ones like Airbnb and Angie’s List have become the Better Business Bureau for consumers. Unlike the Better Business Bureau, these websites often fail to evaluate the nature of the negative review, which puts the burden on the harmed businesses to correct the record.
media accounts. Sometimes the reviews are anonymous and hard to trace. Neverthe- less, consumers comb the Internet for these reviews and rely on these unknown reviews to determine the quality of businesses’ goods and services. Established websites such as Yelp, Google, and Facebook and
52 OCTOBER 2018
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