Originally Posted by ccf
That's the point! The doctors here AREN'T bad. They're "pissed off" about being abused. They are fighting to protect themselves from being libeled on the internet without any recourse. Which until now was the reality of the situation. Slander and libel are not protected free speech so the First Amendment to the Constitution does not apply here. On the site RateMD's.com anyone may post anything they like about any physician and the doctor can't respond. The posts are anonymous. The same poster can make repeated comments at 30 day intervals I believe. This allows for repeated abuse. The site allows posters to write virtually anything. The comments don't even have to come from a patient because nothing is verified about the person posting or the rating. The rating could come from a disgruntled employee, ex-boyfriend or even a competing physician. This isn't an assault on patients rights. There doesn't exist the right to make defamatory public comments which are untrue or can't be verified about non-public figures. The law protects us (or should) against these assaults. At least until the advent of the Internet. Because of certain cyber law statutes doctors can't force these rating sites to remove a comment no matter what it says or how little it lacks validity. Nor can they sue the site because of their disclaimers. The waiver gives the doctor a legal method to remove libelous comments from the site. You can still say that you "can't stand Dr. X" to your family, friends and others. You can report him to his State Board, your insurance carrier and the Better Business Bureau. All legitimate venues for complaint. Dr. X, however, is not permitted to say to anyone even his wife that he "can't stand you" because that would violate your HIPPA rights. For this reason (your HIPPA rights) he risks a fine of hundreds of thousands of dollars if he
directly responds to your negative posting. Fair huh? So rather I consider this a "Wall
of Honor" for physicians who stand up to bullies. By the way the individual who developed
this site had a similar site which defamed college professors. Who's next?
Get a grip. You cannot blame social ills on technology. This site is a facilitator, not a publisher, and cannot be held liable in much the same way as a printer cannot be held liable for a publisher's dissemination of writers' comments.
HIPPA rights have little to do with anything regarding patients' comments. It is the physician who holds themselves out to criticism as the provider of a service, not the patient. That is a common burden in commerce.
No site developed by the developer of this site has defamed college professors. If anyone has been defamed, it's been by posters, not the site nor the developer or owner.
What would you blame next, the Internet? Perhaps it should be sued. :lol:
I wouldn't restrict your comments to US law, either. Almost half the participants on this site's forum are citizens and residents of countries outside the US.
It's interesting that you should avail yourself of the forum provided by the very party whom you accuse of libelous activity, to voice your libel.