How To Protect Yourself Legally as a Blogger or a Youtuber


June 22, 2017 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ Original Articles



Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer, but I do know the law pretty well. I have almost 20 years of business experience mainly dealing with e-commerce, web development, telecommunications, and technology development. Reading this article, you agree to absolve me from any legal responsibility in results to any decisions and/or opinions you make from this article. I advise that you form your own opinion and make any rational decisions with your own research.

 

by Jon Acosto

Ok, RECAP: 6/19/2017 Just3dprint.com is suing 3DPrint.com and 3DPrintingIndustry.com corporate owners. They successfully sued Stratasys, but more than likely they will repeal to set an example of Ryan Simms co-owner of Just3dprint.com and to protect creative commons’ right holders. In early 2016, Just3dprint made headlines for scrapping Thingiverse models under the claim it was free speech. I am not going to write an entire summary, as there are many articles covering this already. Apparently, Mr.  Simms did not like the negative coverage and decided to sue the companies who covered him in a negative light. Joel Telling received a cease and desist e-mail through our e-mail, as Mr. Simms could not verify whether 3dprintnerd.com was actually owned by Mr. Telling. I informed Mr. Telling, as we are good associates of the e-mail, as stated in his youtube video.

I also gave some business advice to Mr. Telling as to handle this situation without further implicating himself legally with Mr. Simm’s Just3DPrint.com. I am glad that Dustin from Jat.MN and 3D Printing Tonight used a similar disclaimer to absolve him from any legal implications. This gave me a thought about future situations where Bloggers and Youtubers may find themselves with legal troubles due to a bad review or comment towards a company. This is the United States of America, Land of the Free and People Who Likes To Sue.

 

The most popular Blogger and Youtubers who can make anywhere from thousands to a million a year can get destroyed by these lawsuits, as lawsuits cost time and money. You don’t have the protection of a big media company like NBC, CNN, and etc to cover those cost. Therefore, someone who does not like your review can send a cease and desist letter demanding you remove that article or youtube cause it is hurting their business. Since you don’t have the financial resources to fight it in court, you just remove the post and call it a day. That is obstruction of freedom of speech, An American’s  First Amendment right. Most free societies have protections against free speech, it’s what makes a free society great. Not advising that you slander someone cause you don’t like the person, as it is your right; but it is morally wrong. But I am advising that if you wrote something that is in a negative light against someone, an entity, or a product then you should just protect yourself legally with a disclaimer.

Make sure you stay within the bounds of a new law that became effective earlier this year, here is the FTC website about the

Consumer Review Fairness Act

https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/consumer-review-fairness-act-what-businesses-need-know

the link was provided by someone on the facebook 3d printing group, as many individuals claimed that I was wrong, but failed to provide proof to their statement. One of them provided this link, At the time I wrote this post, I was completely aware this law took effect and I apologize for any misguidance that I provided. The link above should give you a better guideline on how to approach your disclaimer and make sure you don’t put yourself in legal danger.

Here is a blog post from an attorney who gives you a guide on how to write a blog disclaimer: https://raelyntan.com/write-blog-disclaimer/

Most free societies have protections against free speech, it’s what makes a free society great. Not advising that you slander someone cause you don’t like the person, as it is your right; but it is morally wrong. But I am advising that if you wrote something that is in a negative light against someone, an entity, or a product then you should just protect yourself legally with a disclaimer.

 

Consult with an attorney for further details on how to write a disclaimer. What I am giving you is just good business advice. You may not consider your blog or youtube channel a business, but sometimes you need to treat it as such. You can post such disclaimer in your terms and conditions of your blog’s site or in the description section of your youtube channel. Or even post it before they read the article or video. Even if your fans don’t read it, you are absolved from any legal liability for defamation and slander. Again, consult with an attorney for further details, as I am not a lawyer.

 

DISCLAIMER: You agree to waive any liability against me and my Youtube Channel/Blog on any decisions and opinions resulted from watching/reading my Video/Blog Post. Opinions posted are mine alone and I advise you to form your own opinion and decisions from your own research.

 

Hopefully, these tidbit protects you from any legal action.

 

Here is a list of sites that offer free legal advice or low cost:

 

http://www.freeadvice.com/

20 Places to Get Low Cost or Free Legal Advice for Your Business

 

https://www.avvo.com/free-legal-advice

 

https://www.rocketlawyer.com/legal-advice.rl

 

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