Reckless Social Media Slander


A large number of people document almost everything that happens to them on a daily basis and post it on social media. Most of the time nobody cares what they write about. But they feel good about themselves so……. who cares. Besides, it is a kind of therapy for them as they are saving money instead of paying for a psychologist……. LOL. Anyway, they frequently criticize a place that they’ve recently been to such as a restaurant or a coffee shop, or any other place that has served them. Sometimes their criticism is correct or justified, but other times it isn’t and this harms other people’s livelihoods.

As well, as everyone today has a cell phone with a camera, they’ve become photographers and videographers. People take pictures of anyone who says or does silly things. Sometimes they take a video of someone they had an argument with just to shame them or invade their privacy. But I have to say that some of those people more than deserve public shaming.

Here are a few examples. Ruby lives in a small village. One afternoon she decided to bake a cake for her daughter’s birthday. Since she didn’t have everything she needed she went to the neighborhood mini market to buy a few ingredients. The owner of the store was working at the cash register when she came to pay. They chatted a little bit while she paid the bill and then went on her way.

But when she got home and looked at the bill, she realized she received much less change than she should have. She went back to the store and told the owner she paid with a $100 bill but he only gave her change for a $50 bill. The owner said he didn’t remember her giving him a $100 bill. In addition, as it was the middle of the day, he wouldn’t be able to check all his transactions until they closed. However, he told Ruby he would check everything at the end of the day and would let her know.  He promised that if he found she was short changed, he would gladly pay her back.

Later that evening, he called her and said he didn’t find any extra change in the till. Ruby, who was frustrated by his answer, posted a warning on Facebook about shopping at the store. She wrote about what took place that day and said this situation frequently happens and customers need to pay attention when getting change from the cashiers. She added that customers are purposely engaged in small talk with the cashiers and are distracted, instead of being focused on counting their change and making sure the amount they receive is correct.

I must draw your attention to the fact that this is a small town and everyone living there knows everyone else. However, several people responded to her post. She was engaged in many conversations with people online. The supermarket owner was furious when he saw she was publically questioning his honesty and integrity. He decided to sue her for libel as he claimed her false accusations were harming his livelihood.

The court asked Ruby for proof that this situation has happened to others as she claimed. She admitted she had no proof of it and mentioned she never meant to harm the store owner. She also admitted she couldn’t prove she paid the cashier with a $100 bill either. Mind you, the store owner didn’t get all that he asked for from the court. But the judge ruled Ruby must pay the owner a sizeable sum of money as compensation as well as pay all of his legal fees.

There is no way to know for sure if she is right or wrong. But one thing is for sure. She should have checked the change she received before she left the store…..

Adam and Vanessa were married for approximately 15 years and have 2 children. They didn’t agree on almost anything during the course of their marriage, which caused a lot of stress and instability in their relationship. But it turned into a war when they decided to get divorced. They were constantly fighting about the division of property, their children, child support, etc. They were unable to compromise on anything. As a result, they paid their lawyers a lot of money in legal fees, which made the lawyers very happy.

Nevertheless, after an exhausting 3 years, they finally came to an agreement and finalized their divorce. Adam felt he had to compromise on a number of issues with Vanessa in order to be released from their miserable marriage. He was bitter a few days after the divorce was concluded. Therefore he decided to let off some steam and publish some posts on social media.

He cursed and humiliated his ex-wife and called her a tramp and a psycho. He said had he not married her, nobody would have and he did her a big favor. In short, he dragged her name through the mud. Vanessa decided to sue his ass and said she was publically humiliated in front of her family, friends, and business clients.

The court said that Facebook and other social media can be platforms to deeply hurt people. He ruled unequivocally that what Adam said was evil and ugly and constituted defamation of character. He ordered Adam to pay Vanessa $50,000 in damages plus her legal fees.

In conclusion, I have a feeling that next time Ruby and Adam will think twice before releasing steam on social media………..


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