Dude trying to tarnish my name? action to take?

23 replies
Hey warriors,

About 3 months ago I was being harrassed by a guy who obviously never got along with me. He made websites and created Facebook profiles trying to tear me down in front of friends and family.

The thing is, I don't know who he is and just realized today if I search my name in google one of the sites he setup comes up third. I have his IP address because he has threatened me a number of times on my blog and I know he lives locally.

What should I do? It's obviously bad for business. Should I setup a blogspot site and out rank his blogspot site or what legal action can I take and how can I find out who he is?

Thanks
Sam
#sam bakker
  • Profile picture of the author Derek S
    How much is it worth to you and can you prove any damages to your business? If its worth your time and money, you can go after him for slander assuming he is stating "facts" instead of personal opinions... and the facts are not true.

    I'm not a lawyer by any means and I suggest if you're serous about this, you contact one. Many you can call up and ask for an opinion and they wont charge you. A lawyer will help you obtain a subpoena from the hosts his slander is on and work on shutting it down... for a few thousand dollars.

    A cheaper option is doing some hard hitting SEO, buying up domains with your name in it and knocking the ranking of his slanderous sites down.

    I think every successful marketer deals with this when they or their product becomes extremely popular and gets really high traffic.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kay King
      I know he lives locally.
      How do you know this? And what threats has he made?

      Point is - there are some real looneytunes out there and some of them have found an outlet for their ugliness online. Have you tried blocking his IP?

      I wouldn't stoop to his level - but if he is local, I'd track him down and find out what's going on. Law enforcement is beginning to take cyber harrassment seriously in some areas.
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Barrs
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    • Profile picture of the author Joe Mobley
      I think Paul might be on to something.

      Is SamBakker.com your site? It looks like you have most of Google page 1.

      Add a couple of Squidoo lenses, some Hub pages, some YouTube videos, you get the idea. You would probably take up the first 3 pages of Google.

      Mmm... makes me think.

      Joe
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  • Profile picture of the author samstephens
    I'm not a lawyer either, but I read something interesting not too long ago: the difference between slander and libel

    If someone says something about you, that's slander, and you have to prove damages.

    If someone writes it down and makes it available to people, then that's libel, and damaged are often "assumed".

    If you think it may be affecting your business, maybe talk to a local lawyer who might take care of it all for you. Especially since you said this guy is local.

    cheers
    Sam
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  • Profile picture of the author Rus Sells
    Seems to me if he's slandering you on sites he does not own you can just report him for TOS violation.
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  • Profile picture of the author Flareman
    I'm sure there are laws against threats like this in your country. File a report against him.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheAnnoyingOrange
    Hmm, I searched your name on google and couldn't find any slander on the first page. It seems that the pages have dropped off as news publications, facebook and your own website pages have taken over the first page.
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  • Profile picture of the author snapcontent
    Looks like the problem has gone away. Interesting question though.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kevin Riley
    Originally Posted by sambakker View Post

    Hey warriors,

    About 3 months ago I was being harrassed by a guy who obviously never got along with me. He made websites and created Facebook profiles trying to tear me down in front of friends and family.

    The thing is, I don't know who he is and just realized today if I search my name in google one of the sites he setup comes up third. I have his IP address because he has threatened me a number of times on my blog and I know he lives locally.

    What should I do? It's obviously bad for business. Should I setup a blogspot site and out rank his blogspot site or what legal action can I take and how can I find out who he is?

    Thanks
    Sam
    If you're being harassed, document each incident. Contact the police. In many countries, they are taking this quite seriously now.
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    • Profile picture of the author sambakker
      Hey thanks everyone for all the great responses. I just got back from my Lawyer and he told me the thing to do was to first of all contact the local ISP and get the dudes name. I know hes local because he made references to me previously living in NZ and I used a tool that came back with this

      <Response>
      <Ip>122.59.236.191</Ip>
      <Status>OK</Status>
      <CountryCode>NZ</CountryCode>
      <CountryName>New Zealand</CountryName>
      <RegionCode>G2</RegionCode>
      <RegionName>Wellington</RegionName>
      <City>Wellington</City>
      <ZipPostalCode/>
      <Latitude>-41.3</Latitude>
      <Longitude>174.783</Longitude>
      </Response>

      Once I get his name I can take start legal action against him for defamation to my name where I can claim personal grevence and I can take action against him as my company as well if I want to. I have been to the police before and they wouldnt do anything which was a real pain.

      What i'm going to do is gather all the evidence I have, send it to the ISP and proove im not his ex girlfriend or anything trying to stalk him. When I know who it is ill have my lawyer send him a notice and then if that doesnt work I can take him to court. If I do decide to go for that extreme apparantly im looking at 10k minimum so ill just deal with that if the time comes.

      I also have started up a blogspot blog of my own in an attempt to outrank his blogspot blog and drop him down and I have bought up all the domains relating to my name which I plan to use to outrank his current stuff and protect myself in future.

      If anything as Paul said it has been a lesson that I need to setup pages over Google to protect myself incase someone decides to go on a rampage for no reason. It might be a good wakeup call that'll save me in future, hell if my prevention works maybe I can write a book about it with a cool case study to help businesses.
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    • Profile picture of the author Tom B
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      Originally Posted by Kevin Riley View Post

      If you're being harassed, document each incident. Contact the police. In many countries, they are taking this quite seriously now.
      That is why I have a very big file on your activities, Mr Riley.
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      • Profile picture of the author Joe Mobley
        You can do a 'whois' lookup by IP here...

        Whois By IP Address

        Maybe you've already done that.


        Joe
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      • Profile picture of the author Kevin Riley
        Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

        That is why I have a very big file on your activities, Mr Riley.
        I believe they only take action against those who harass humans.
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        Kevin Riley, long-time Warrior living in Osaka, Japan

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  • Profile picture of the author samstephens
    If it help, in a lot of these cases the person slandering you just comes across as an angry nutcase anyway.

    Usually the only people to take these kinds of posts seriously are other angry nutcases.
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  • Profile picture of the author Caleb Spilchen
    Now, that would be Libel. I think we all miss the point here.. You mention the guy has a blog spot blog..

    Yet, after all the horror stories of blogger blogs being deleted.. Nobody thinks to report abuse to google?

    How can I report abuse? - Blogger Help

    You could also click the REPORT BLOG Button. Google is based in the USA.

    Caleb

    PS. I am not a lawyer nor am I of age to be one, so anything I say is based on my opinions and research, and should not be taken as legal advice. If you want sound legal advice you must talk to an authorized legal representative in your respective country. /endnotice

    EDIT: That didn't take long. look here to make your report. Click on the slander/libel button I would assume.
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  • Profile picture of the author waken
    Since you can identify that he's local, there's also high possibility that you might have met that person face to face before.

    Hence, I am more concern on what you could have done unintentionally that offended him / her. Lot of times, we never knew if what we say / do that sounds nothing but jokes etc. might be something that hurt others.
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  • Profile picture of the author natorob
    Hopefully, this is not becoming a trend; but it sounds like it may be as there are more and more companies out there charging big bucks for "reputation management".

    This is where they do exactly as DigitalJoe says... creating Hub/Squidoos, articles, etc to drive the negative sites onto page three or four.

    Outside of legal action, that could be a quicker solution to get any negative website or blog driven down the search results.
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  • Profile picture of the author DeborahDera
    I honestly don't know why this person would be harassing you online but regardless...

    I once worked for an SEO expert who did "reputation management" and she is pretty good at getting those negative articles on Google to fall below the first 2 pages (so that your potential customers aren't faced with this when they type your name into Google). Send me a PM if you'd like a referral.
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  • Profile picture of the author R Hagel
    Hi Sam,

    Just a note...

    I found the site (or one of the sites), which fortunately was several pages into Google. That page mentions your "tired" site. On your "tired" site you use the name "Simon" on the front page and "Sam" on the "About Me" page.

    We marketers completely understand the need for pen names. However, using two names on the same site may look suspicious to those not familiar with the reasons for pen names.

    Anyway, I thought I would point out this mistake so that you can use one name on the site for the sake of consistency.

    As for everything else...

    Sounds like a law-enforcement or legal problem, so I'll leave comments on that for the legal professionals.

    Cheers,
    Becky
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  • Profile picture of the author Ebay
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    • Profile picture of the author Bill Farnham
      Sam, what I think you're seeing regarding him 'coming up third', is Googles' personalized search affecting your search results. You appear in my browser to own the entire first page.

      That is unless these 'naked marketer' type sites are not yours.

      As others have stated, you may want to seek legal remedy.

      ~Bill
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  • Profile picture of the author MarkAnderson
    Fortunately, an idiot has harassed you. If not, you'll never be able to find who actually he is.
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  • Profile picture of the author King Shiloh
    Banned
    All you need right now is to consult an Attorney. But tell him the whole truth of the matter so that he would know how best to go about it.

    I don't think that folks here can help you more than a legal practitioner would do.
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