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Internet defamation

Internet defamation occurs when you express a false statement of fact via the internet. A fact is different from an opinion. Everyone is entitled to an opinion but the problem occurs when your opinion contains false facts. It can lead not only to court but also to a breakdown of the relationship of mutual trust and respect between doctor and patient.

Courts usually treat defamation on the internet (posts on social media etc.) similar to off-line defamation. There are, however, differences when the false statements are made online.

  1. Defamation: a false statement of fact which tends to harm the reputation of a person or company.
  2. Libel: written defamation, for example, on a website, by a post on a web page, comment, bulletin board, review, rating or blog post.
  3. Slander: defamation that is spoken, via a posted video, podcast or audio file etc.