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VIC Intellectual Property Law - Adding Companies to Online Directory Without Permission?

Discussion in 'Intellectual Property Law Forum' started by declanr, 24 February 2015.

  1. declanr

    declanr Member

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    Hi, I am creating an online directory and have compiled list of companies I want to add to it. Can I add them without asking their permission and then provide the option for them to claim it under intellectual property law?

    I have seen this on Urbanspoon that people add Companies. And then there is a button on the right side that says "Is this your restaurant?". They will be able to request this is removed free of charge if they do not like it or do not want to be associated. And they can also keep a free listing for as long as they like if they are interested. There is an option to pay for more features but it is only an option.

    Is this ok? Many thanks in advance!
     
  2. Ivy

    Ivy Well-Known Member

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    Hi Declan,

    My understanding is that providing a listing of companies would be fine if you are providing for example, contact details about the company or reviews. However what do you mean by the option to "claim it"? To claim what?

    I would be more concerned about the potential for your site to then attract defamation claims if users of your site post defamatory comments. Remember that you/ your website is liable for defamatory information posted on your site.

    I hope this helps.
     
  3. Sarah J

    Sarah J Well-Known Member

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    Hi Declanr,

    I believe this is fine to do. There are many "rating" websites that index and rank companies/brands without the companies or brands being aware or sponsoring the rankings in any way. You may need an option for the company to request the removal of their brand from your website.

    As for defamation suits, that is a concern. However, if it is crowd sourced information or where the information about the companies/brands are opinions or true (or substantially true) representations (i.e. not false or misleading) of what the company/brand does or has, then this would be a defence to defamation.
     
  4. declanr

    declanr Member

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    That's great!

    Thanks so much for the help!
     
  5. Iva

    Iva Member

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    Hi there,

    These answers were really helpful.

    If we can add listings of other businesses, are we allowed to even write a brief bio about them and add their logo too?

    Thanks in advance for your responses.

    Kind regards,
     

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