VIC How to Have Defamatory Comments Removed on Facebook?

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MLC

Well-Known Member
12 September 2016
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I am a co-trustee of a not for profit charity. Comments have been made by a person on Facebook that are not only untrue they are damaging to the work we do for our extremely small charity (there are no staff, it’s just the two of us). We receive no funding so we can’t afford to sue for damages.

What options do we have to have this person remove their comment?

Thanks
 

Rod

Lawyer
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27 May 2014
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1. Contact Facebook, say the comments are defamatory, and you want the comments removed.
2. If you know who it is that made the comments send them a cease and desist letter.
 

DMQC

Well-Known Member
29 June 2016
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Rod is correct, you should be able to report the post and have it removed. You do not need to sue to have the post removed, however, if you are seeking damages, then you would need to lodge a claim at your local courthouse.
 

MLC

Well-Known Member
12 September 2016
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121
Unfortunately Facebook is no more interested than they are able to determine whether something is defamatory or not.

ie; they can't take my word for it that the comments are false and as a result damage mine and my charities reputation. In fact, I did ask them specifically so that I could get their response for you and that's exactly what they said - that they would never delete something just because someone told them it wasn't true.

Rod is correct, you should be able to report the post and have it removed. You do not need to sue to have the post removed, however, if you are seeking damages, then you would need to lodge a claim at your local courthouse.
Unfortunately Facebook won't act just because I told them the comments are untrue and therefore damage mine and my charity's reputation.
 

MLC

Well-Known Member
12 September 2016
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121
1. Contact Facebook, say the comments are defamatory, and you want the comments removed.
2. If you know who it is that made the comments send them a cease and desist letter.
Facebook couldn't care less but at least they were honest. They were very clear - they don't get involved in he said - she said arguments. ie: they have no way of knowing who is telling the truth and they are interested in finding out
 

Rod

Lawyer
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27 May 2014
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Who is the page administrator? Next step is to tell them to remove the post.

Have you identified the person making the comments and they page administrator?
 

Rod

Lawyer
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BTW, Facebook's attitude is what it is, but that doesn't make it legal. Their arrogance is breathtaking at times.

In Australia once a publisher is notified of the defamatory material and refuses to act it loses access to the defence of innocent dissemination. Having said that, it is easier to claim against the poster and page administrator who are likely based in Australia.
 

MLC

Well-Known Member
12 September 2016
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Who is the page administrator? Next step is to tell them to remove the post.

Have you identified the person making the comments and they page administrator?
The comments are not on a page. They have been made by an individual in a private group.

Since these comments have been made, this person has opened another account (individual profile not page) in a name that clearly isn't a persons name with the sole person of posting their unfounded and untrue accusations and Facebook doesn't care about that either.

A few people, including myself, have reported the account as fake and for "using a name they don't use in everyday life" and they still won't do anything, despite the fact no one, not even Facebook, would say this account is using a real person's name, so it's obvious Facebook knows they are breaking at least one of their rules and they don't care.

Their advice was to block the account if we don't want to see the content! Totally missing the point that it's the rest of the world that we don't want to see the content!!
 

Rod

Lawyer
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Do you know who this person is in real life? If so send them a cease and desist letter.

Do you know who, in real life, runs the private group? If so tell them to remove posts and remove poster from group.
 

MLC

Well-Known Member
12 September 2016
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121
Do you know who this person is in real life? If so send them a cease and desist letter.

Do you know who, in real life, runs the private group? If so tell them to remove posts and remove poster from group.
We do know who the person is but we don't think the address we have for them is correct. Re: the private group - it is their group. They have shared their comments in another private group, however, the admin of that group have responded the same way Facebook has - they aren't interested in a he said, she said argument.