Yelp.Inc (YELP) star ratings are not responsible for the loss of your business, the decision said Under Federal law. It depends upon the content posted by users, dismissing a libel lawsuit filed against Yelp by the owner of a San Francisco based company, this Monday.
U.S circuit court appeals said the star rating system by Yelp (YELP) is developed for the users to share the experiences they got from that businesses. And that content is not created by Yelp, and Rating system is designed to help and guide the people to get the best services for Locksmith, Plumbers, Resturant and more. Under federal law, the judge declared, Yelp is not liable for content it gets from its users.
The ruling continued focus on the libel lawsuit filed by the owner of a Washington state locksmith company, Douglas Kimzey. The court said that Kimzey’s business received a bad star rating on Yelp in 2011, That 'Bad' star rating is created by users who contributed their experiences and yet Yelp.Inc is not responsible.
Again Kimzey didn't agree and claimed that negative review is for another business and Yelp transferred to his company to extort him to pay, else Yelp will portray the wrong image of his business.
"We have checked that Yelp.Inc rating system based on the third parties are the information reduced to single aggregate metric, and it is nothing but a user-generated data,” Circuit Judge M. Margaret McKeown said.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court also declined Kimzey's claim that Yelp should be held responsible for distributing reviews to search engines. The court appeal said that distributing content to search engine does not make Yelp the creator of the material.
Kimzey served as his attorney-at-law and said he plans to appeal to a higher court panel.
The appeals court approved "Yelp to produce a forum for consumers to share their experiences with the local businesses," said Aaron Schur, Yelp's senior director of litigation.
After the court decision, "I lost my 95% of business after receiving a one-star rating on Yelp," said Kimzey owner of locksmith business.
Also, his statement was "If you got one-star rating people will not come near you, no matter you have been in business for one week or 2.5 decades." Kimzey said.