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April 29, 2013

First thing we do...

Let's kill all the lawyers. If you read the woman's feedback you'll see that it's very civil.

Med Express Sues Marginally Dissatisfied Customer For Posting Accurate Feedback On eBay

Here's yet another example of companies using lawsuits to censor speech -- a situation that would be stopped if there was a serious federal anti-SLAPP law in place. Paul Levy shares the incredible story of a company called "Med Express," an Ohio company, who appears to sell various medical equipment exclusively via eBay (there are other "Med Express" companies out there from what I can tell). One buyer, in South Carolina, purchased something, but was disappointed by the fact that the product arrived postage due. The woman noted it wasn't the fact that she had to pay, just the inconvenience of having to pay to get the delivery when it wasn't expected. In response, she left negative feedback on Med Express' eBay page.

While Med Express did express regret (while noting that some other customers had seen the same problem) and offered to reimburse the postage due, it also asked her to remove the negative review. However, as she noted, it wasn't the money issue, but the inconvenience, so she decided to leave her feedback up. At this point, Med Express and its lawyer, James Amodio, apparently decided that if she didn't like "inconvenience" it would subject her to more inconvenience and sued her for defamation in state court in Ohio and sought a temporary restraining order against eBay to block the review. While that failed, apparently the judge is allowing a hearing to happen for a preliminary injunction even though (as Levy points out) the same reason the TRO was rejected should apply to any preliminary injunction.

Amazingly, the complaint directly lays out the pretty clear fact that it's suing her for not removing a truthful review. They don't even attempt to argue that she said anything false or defamatory. Just that they feel she shouldn't have complained since they offered to reimburse.

Posted by joke du jour at April 29, 2013 06:02 PM

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