E-commerce: must businesses tolerate bad online reviews?

A business’ reputation can improve greatly through online reviews. But the consequences of negatives reviews can also be severe. In certain circumstances, online businesses can protect themselves from bad reviews.

E-commerce: must businesses tolerate bad online reviews? © arahan-Fotolia

E-commerce: must businesses tolerate bad online reviews? © arahan-Fotolia

Bad online reviews

Whether or not a business can remove bad reviews or take any further legal action against negative online reviews depends on the content of the review.

According to a recent German district court judgment, if reviews are published in the form of a score, businesses must tolerate them. The judgment is not yet legally binding.

The facts

The case concerned a general practitioner who received an average score of 4.4 on a review website (the scale being 1 to 6 with six being the worst score). The score was supplemented by a text.

The GP requested from the website host that a number of the individual scores which made up the average score be deleted including: ‘treatment’ (5), ‘explanation and information’ (5), ‘practice facilities and furnishing’ (5) and ‘telephone availability’ (5). He asserted that the scores presented untrue information and were therefore defamatory. He also doubted that the review was posted by one of his patients.

The host provider deleted the accompanying text but did not remove the bad scores. As a result, the doctor sued the host provider claiming for their removal.

No infringement of personality rights

The District Court in Kiel took the view that a review score is not an assertion of fact but an expression of opinion which is protected under the right to free speech. The court concluded that the score did not infringe the GP’s personality rights and did not amount to defamation.

Derogatory statements

The court clarified that the position is different if online reviews contain derogatory statements, designed only malign someone. However, the court found no indications of this here.


An appeal has since been lodged and it remains to be seen how the appeal court will handle the case.

Under current case law, doctors and other businesses with websites must usually tolerate negative online reviews. However, where an online review contains untrue or derogatory statements, businesses are permitted to take steps to have it deleted. The first step would be to approach the operator of the review website.

Defamation cases are usually decided on a case-by-case basis. It is therefore advisable to seek legal advice and to conduct a thorough analysis of the relevant content before taking any further action.

Related articles:

Kilian Kost joined WILDE BEUGER SOLMECKE as a lawyer in 2009. He specialises in internet law and competition law. In 2013 he became an accredited intellectual property lawyer.

Do you like this article? Feel free to rate it now:

1 Stern2 Sterne3 Sterne4 Sterne5 Sterne (Not rated yet)

RSSComments (97)

Leave a comment

  1. […] This article explains the legal options German businesses have when they receive bad online reviews. Read more here.  […]

  2. cikaa says:

    Buruan bergabung bersama kami,
    promo hot, smua pasti menang dan dapat no zonk..

  3. judi poker says:

    interesting articles and this is my first first reading a very interesting article thanks for this article that fits with the theme news.
    poker online

  4. Interesting articles and this is my first first reading a very interesting article thanks for this article that fits with the theme news.Cek SGP Terbaru disini

  5. Togel HK says:

    Togel Hongkong this posting is nice !! I LOVE IT….

  6. melu ngembul mas,.. agario unblocked pvp

  7. Excellent post. I was checking continuously this blog and I am impressed!
    Very useful info particularly the last part
    I care for such information a lot. I was seeking this certain information for a very long time.

  8. i dont believe, this blog very amazing! check Prediksi Sgp hari ini for more info about prediksi sgp.

    Thanks alot .

  9. nice article,keep post like this bola

  10. Loket4D says:

    Thanks a bunch for sharing this with all people you really know what you are talking about! Bookmarked. Kindly additionally discuss with my site =). We may have a hyperlink change agreement among us! Judi Togel

  11. Situs togel says:

    Thanks a bunch for sharing this with all people you really know what you are talking about! Bookmarked.

  12. LOKET4D says:

    Thanks a bunch for sharing this with all people you really know what you are talking about! Bookmarked. Kindly additionally discuss with my site =). We may have a hyperlink change agreement among us! Situs Togel Terpercaya

  13. judi online says:

    menyediakan pasaran togel resmi seperti Togel Singapore, Togel Hongkong, Togel Sydney serta pasaran paling ramai saat ini

  14. On the internet online poker gaming is progressively congested on every wagering company site utilizing Android. Along with the smooth centers and useful video games that can be accessed anywhere and anytime, online poker togel sgp video games are offered by accountable representatives.

  15. Dedication to a video game that can make gamers comfy when production this on the internet video game from cash is much more appealing. Each online indotogel poker dealership can offer Online poker Texas Holdem, however the high quality and credibility from the dealership is definitely not the exact same.

  16. nonton movie says:

    On the internet video games are ensured to bring delight and make a great revenue, currently you can have fun with Android and Apple iphone mobile phones. The video game with 52 items from play cards and variations bagas31 such as Texas Hold’em Online poker, City from Online poker, Capsa piling, Globe Collection from Online poker, Omaha online poker and much more, online poker video games are geared up with VCM web server as rate from assistance. video game assistance.

  17. king4d says:

    Due to using Android, it‘s not unexpected that gaming video games are ending up being increasingly more available. Online poker Wagering Representatives are accountable for ending up being the foundation from every online poker gamer that can play top quality video games.

  18. shelly says:

    Resmi4d Situs Result terpercaya Singapure
    Segera Daftarkan User idnya dan menangkan jackpot Ratusan Juta Rupiah

  19. آرگان says:

    I read your post its very very good best post
    keep up this work

  20. Thanks a bunch for sharing this with all people you really know what you are talking about! Bookmarked. Kindly additionally discuss with my site. http://prediksitotosgp.net/data-keluaran-sgp-terbaru/

  21. http://ysorkh.net/home/hpe-memory/

    شرکت شبکه گستران یاقوت سرخ

    خرید و فروش هارد سرور

    خرید و فروش رم سرور

    خرید و فروش سرور hp

    خرید و فروش تجهیزات شبکه

  22. Hello

    I happened to come from Google here

    It was good

    Send me here for my friend

    Thank you

  23. begin here says:

    I was surfing net and fortunately came across this site and found very interesting stuff here. Its really fun to read. I enjoyed a lot. Thanks for sharing this wonderful information.

  24. on leash says:

    Totally awesome posting! Loads of valuable data and motivation, both of which we all need!Relay welcome your work.

  25. nosey barker says:

    Thank you for helping people get the information they need. Great stuff as usual. Keep up the great work!!!

  26. Somebody Sometimes with visits your website routinely and prescribed it as far as I can tell to peruse also.

  27. I am crazy about this blog. I have visit so many time to this blog. I was found this blog from Google. I have received a nice stuff of information.

  28. Great job for publishing such a beneficial web site. Your web log isn’t only useful but it is additionally really creative too. There tend to be not many people who can certainly write not so simple posts that artistically. Continue the nice writing

  29. powerball says:

    Incredible posting this is from you. I am really and truly thrilled to read this marvelous post. You’ve really impressed me today. I hope you’ll continue to do so!

  30. Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Big thanks for the useful info

  31. health says:

    A debt of gratitude is in order for posting this data. I simply need to tell you that I simply look at your site and I discover it exceptionally fascinating and enlightening.

  32. Sharnfold says:

    You there, this is really good post here. Thanks for taking the time to post such valuable information. Quality content is what always gets the visitors coming.

  33. alexis dove says:

    I really treasure your piece of work, Great post

  34. تراکت says:


    I happened to come from Google here

    It was good

    Send me here for my friend

    Thank you

  35. This blog was extremely helpful. I really appreciate your kindness in sharing this with me and everyone else!

  36. Good composed article. It will be strong to any individual who uses it, including me. Continue doing what you are doing

  37. polus media says:

    Good composed article. It will be strong to any individual who uses it, including me. Continue doing what you are doing

  38. Only a grinning visitant here to share the adoration

  39. jokerqq.fun says:

    Jokerqq.Fun Adalah Situs Link Alternatif Jokerqq, Login Jokerqq, Daftar Jokerqq, Dan Agen Bandarq Online Terbaik Di Asia. Dapatkan ID Sakti Hanya Di Ada Di Jokerqq.fun

  40. Mainpoker88 merupakan agen judi poker online uang asli terpercaya yang menyediakan permainan terlengkap yakni : Game poker online, domino qq / kiu kiu, capsa susun, ceme keliling, bandar ceme, dominobet, samgong dan casino war dalam 1 akun permainan. Mainpoker88 memberikan banyak permainan pada kita semua dan dengan Rp15.000 saja anda sudah bisa menikmati permainan di METROQQ antara lain: DOMINOQQ,BANDARQQ,BANDAR POKER,BANDAR SAKONG,dan yang paling seru adalah POKER ONLINE.

  41. Syair Hk says:

    I like this article very much

  42. really nice post! i also have a good post on my website, hope you can visit it, here is the link : Nonton Film Online

  43. sbobet says:

    Really fun to read this article. Very informative.
    thank you.
    Please open detiksport for gettin new soccer articles!

  44. barcatoto says:

    Thanks bro, i like this blog

  45. king4d says:

    i will come back because this blog good

  46. data sgp says:

    informasi mengenai data sgp dan PENGELUARAN SGP terupdate terbaik,terakurat dan tercepat.

  47. Joker says:

    Thank you, I am very happy to see your website, it feels beautiful in my eyes after reading it
    Judi Domino

  48. Joker says:

    JokerQQ adalah Judi Domino terpercaya di Indonesia. Menyediakan Permainan poker,dominoqq,ceme online terpercaya dengan ribuan pemain lainnya. Main dan raih jackpot 60 juta sekarang bersama kami dan Jadilah member setia kami sekarang juga

  49. Thanks for post, nice article.

  50. data sgp says:

    bicara mengenai togel online tidak akan lepas dari pasaran togel sgp. bahkan saat ini data sgp menjadi pencarian terbanyak yang digunakan para bettor dalam menganalisa sesuatu.

  51. rajadatasgp says:

    Please make sure that this email is working properly, there are no typos in the address

  52. mukapoker says:

    now online business is the best means to get profits quickly. pretty good article. thank you

  53. daunpoker says:

    daunpoker merupakan situs terpercaya yang bisa anda gunakan untuk bermain. Dengan menyediakan 8 game yang bisa kamu mainkan dalam 1 id

  54. Excellent blog right here! Additionally your site
    loads up fast! What host are you using? Can I get your associate hyperlink to your host?
    I desire my site loaded up as fast as yours lol
    Live Chat agen bola

  55. ubcpoker says:

    merupakan sebuah situs poker terpopuler saat ini yang memiliki kualitas terbaik dalam game. daftar ubcpoker sekarang juga

  56. 365kasino says:

    365kasino merupakan salah satu situs agen judi casino online terbaik di Indonesia, segera daftarkan diri anda sekarang juga

  57. Thanks for a very interesting blog. What else may I get that kind of info written in such a perfect approach?

  58. Dewapoker merupakan website poker online dengan uang asli di indonesia dan terkenal poker online terbesar di asia. DEWA POKER adalah game poker online dengan menggunakan deposit rendah dari Dewapoker. Mainkan game dewa poker anda kan mendapatkan bonus setiap minggunya. Link alternatif Dewapoker Asia 2019.

  59. ecommerce says:

    sure, how else to make a right decision?

  60. POKER88 says:

    awesome. Thank you for this wonderful opportunity

  61. idn poker says:

    I am incapable of reading articles online very often, but I’m happy I did today. It is very well written, and your points are well-expressed. I request you warmly, please, don’t ever stop writing.

    Thank you so much

  62. Thanks a lot for sharing this with all of us I always choose to read good post and full of information.
    Informative post helps us to know much as compared to normal article.
    Good work thanks.

  63. poker88 says:

    Permainan Poker88 Sangat Di Minatin Di Seluruh Panca Negara Seperti Di Negara Las Vegas , Portugal , Macau , Afrika , Atlantic City ( USA ),Singapura ,Malaysia Dan Masih Banyak Negara Lain…,Saat Ini Poker88 Yang Sangat Banyak Diminatin Di Indonesia Dan Di Asia Terpercaya Karena Jackpot yang Dari Yang Kecil Sampai Yang Terbesar Tersedia,Sampai Sekarang Player Dari Indonesia Bermain Poker88 Untuk Mencari Kemenangan Dan Mengincar Untuk Mendapatkan Jackpot Yang Besar.

    Di Indonesia Sendiri Poker88 Sangat Di Minatin Ratusan Ribu Pemain Yang Aktif Setiap Harinya Untuk Bermain Dan Mencari Kemenangan
    Karena Situs Poker88 Terpercaya Di Indonesia Sangat Banyak Dimainkan,Ayuk Tunggu Apalagi Silakan Daftar Sekarang Terima kasih .

  64. poker88 says:

    Poker88 Games Are Very Liked Across All Countries Such As In Las Vegas, Portugal, Macau, Africa, Atlantic City (USA), Singapore, Malaysia And There Are Many Other Countries … Currently Poker88 Is Very Much Diminated In Indonesia And On Trusted Asia Because Jackpots From Small To Biggest Are Available, Until Now Players From Indonesia Play Poker88 To Seek Victory And Target To Get A Big Jackpot.

    In Indonesia, Poker88 is very much liked by hundreds of thousands of players who are active every day to play and look for victory
    Because the Trusted Poker88 Site in Indonesia is Played Very Much, Waiting Much More Especially Please Register Now Thank you.

  65. aremapoker says:

    Aremapoker.com Poker Online Terbaik dan Terpercaya Di indonesia, Banyak Bonus Bagi para member nya..
    ™ Bonus NEW MEMBER 100%
    ™ Bonus DEPOSIT HARIAN 20%
    ™ Dll
    Nb : Syarat dan ketentuan hubungi Livechat

    ▶Minimal Deposit : Rp 5.000,-◀
    ▶Minimal Withdraw: Rp 20.000,-◀

    Permainan yang Di sediakan dalam 1ID :
    🌐 Poker
    🌐 Ceme Keliling
    🌐 Big TWO
    🌐 Capsa Susun
    🌐 DominoQQ
    🌐 Bandar Capsa
    🌐 Slot Game
    🌐 Live Game

    Langsung Hubungi saja ke WebSite kami di


  66. Mau mendapatkan pelayanan yang baik dan ramah???

    Modal Kecil bisa mendapatkan hasil yg luar biasa…

  67. kungfu4d2 says:

    Menarik sekali, perlu saya coba ini..
    kebetulan lagi cara tentang hal ini.

  68. loginfun88 says:

    ok mantap sob buat infonya dan salam kenal

  69. pokervita says:

    keren mas buat infonya dan salam sukses selalu

  70. togel4d says:

    bagus bos artikelnya dan menarik

  71. tanks for share very usefull

  72. Please visit my website for daiy updated information of Hongkongpools results.

  73. Google latest update will be launching next month.

  74. Google bing and yahoo are top 3 best search engines till now.

  75. interesting articles and this is my first first reading a very interesting article thanks for this article that fits with the theme news. facebook video downloader online

  76. A debt of gratitude is in order for setting aside an ideal opportunity to talk about this, I feel emphatically about it and adoration adapting more on this point.

Leave a comment

By submitting your comment, your consent to our privacy policy is deemed to be given.