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JGM
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 7200
Experience:  28 years as a practising solicitor.
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Hi I received this mail today regarding a blog post I made

Resolved Question:

Hi I received this mail today regarding a blog post I made last week could you tell me the probability of such action being actioned and what my options are. Here is the mail


There has recently been drawn to my attention a blog post that has appeared on the website of St Mary’s Loch AC , of which you are the named author. This blog contains pointed and sustained criticism of myself, and is simply a continuation of a campaign that you have waged against me for some time in which you refer to an unnamed individual as an unqualified fool. The important difference in the most recent posting is the fact that you have included the banner headline from my own website, and if you search for a fishing guide in the Borders using recognised sites such as Scottish river fishing, my banner headline is instantly recognisable. Accordingly, my good name and the reputation of my business is directly associated with all the negative commentary and malicious description contained in the most recent St Mary’s blog. This includes words such as unqualified, arrogant , feckless, greedy, self important, thoughtless etc. etc.



It has now come to the point where I cannot allow your malicious attacks on my competency and good name to continue unchecked. I have taken expert legal advice and have established that this most recent blog post, aimed as it is at me for all to see, is actionable. I am now proceeding to gather my own data from both existing customers and any new customers of my business, and if it can be established that on a balance of probability, some customers would have been dissuaded from using my services by reading this blog had they not already known me, I will not hesitate to raise an action in the local sheriff court against the St Mary’s Angling Club and all its office bearers for damages under a number of heads of claim including damage to personal reputation, proven loss of business and solatium for hurt feelings that is likely to be measured in a significant five figure sum.



Given that the blog in question is written under the auspices of the St Mary’s Angling Club, all the office bearers of the organisation as well as yourself will be included in the court action as defenders on the basis that an element of personal liability attaches to them as the comments are all being made in the name of the organisation, and it is the audience drawn by the name of the club that is giving these insults an airing. In the same blog, you make it clear that river guides and fishing guides are not required to obtain any particular qualification, and so the words of your own posting are sufficient to establish that your criticism and personal attack on my integrity are wholly without justification.



The last thing I would have wanted to do is to cause unnecessary hassle and expense to a group of like minded fellow anglers in the Borders, but I have a livelihood to protect and a family to provide for, and your sustained unpleasantness and unjustified criticism of my business and myself as an individual have left me with no alternative. If the blog in question is still available for public viewing two days from the date of this letter, my solicitor will be authorised to draft a writ for warranting by the sheriff court as soon as the background supporting data has been collected.



The defence of such an action is likely to cost the various people concerned thousands of pounds in legal fees. I would much rather that any funds of your club are put to a proper use for the wider benefit of its members and the local fishing community, but your actions driven by God knows what kind of bitterness leave me with no option than to defend my self and my business from attack.



On the advice of my solicitors, this letter is being copied to all committee members so that all concerned have had fair notice of my intentions.
The blog post is at http://stmarysanglingclubnews.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/a-landmark-day-for-angling-in-scottish.html
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Scots Law
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question.

If this person can be identified then rarely have I read an article that could be construed as so defamatory. Whether or no he was qualified, the phraseology "unqualified fool" throughout the article is defamatory as are the words "arrogant, feckless, greedy, self important, thoughtless...."

The tone of the article is insulting and provocative. A defence of "fair comment" would fail.

The answer to your question is to remove the article immediately as an action for defamation would be successful against your club.

I hope this helps. Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello JGM this is disappointing. Would I have to remove the complete blog or only the most recent article? Could I publish another blog using the name St Marys Fishing club.


regards

Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
You have to remove all defamatory statements.

St Mary's Fishing Club would be associated with St Mary's Angling Club in name and I doubt that will protect you or the club.
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 7200
Experience: 28 years as a practising solicitor.
JGM and other Scots Law Specialists are ready to help you

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