Tips for Avoiding Online Defamation of Character

Usage of social media websites is increasing day by day. There is no way to stop the legal risk associated with it. The only way to avoid defamation and protect your name is to play it safe.

What is Defamation of Character?

Before looking at the tips to avoid defamation charges, it is important to understand what defamation of character actually means. A defamation of character can occur in 5 ways: a) when some person makes a false statement that can harm someone’s reputation b) when the statement appears to be conveying a fact rather than an opinion c) when your statement is communicated to a third person or published like online posting and many people read it d) the person responsible for making the statement is at fault and used incorrect information without verifying the facts and e) the subject on which the statement is made causes financial harm to a person.

It is important for every person to understand what defamation of character is and its legal consequences. The following are some best practices that can be followed in order to avoid defamation of character via online.

5 Tips for Avoiding Defamation of Character via Online

  1. Think Before You Write: When posting something in your Facebook or Twitter account, it is important to think about it and the consequences that can result from the post. It is important to ask the question- “Will this affect anyone’s reputation?” If you feel that the post or tweet will affect the reputation of a person or a group of people, it is better to avoid the post or tweet.
  2. Avoid Tweeting or Posting When you are Angry: People always make mistakes when they are angry. Experts believe that when you are angry, you don’t think about the consequences and make blunders. Therefore, in order to avoid defamation of character charges against you, it is advisable to avoid posting or tweeting anything when you are angry or out of your mind.
  3. Avoid Interpretation: It is important to avoid interpretation when you are posting something online through your Facebook or Twitter account. Through interpretation, you are actually giving a chance to readers to take action against you for things you might not even think of. In order to avoid unwanted complications, it is always advisable to post or tweet facts that are true rather than post something that you are not sure of.
  4. Verify the Source: The posts or tweets you make are capable of generating more views. Therefore, it is important for people to make sure that the content they are posting or tweeting is actually true and they are from a verified source. Most people get into trouble when they post something they are not sure about and is not from a valid source.
  5. Hash tags: Today, you can see a number of posts and tweets with hash tags added to it. It is important for people to understand that by adding hash tags, you can easily alter the context of the original message and cause defamation of character. Therefore, before you add a hash tag, it is important to spend some time reading about it.


It is important for every person to understand what he or she is posting online in order to avoid defamation of character charges against him/her. By following the tips given above, you can avoid defamation charges against you.