President Obama signs the Consumer Review Fairness Act into law

Dec 20, 16

The statute prevents companies from punishing customers for poor reviews.

President Obama signed a number of bills into law on Thursday, most notably H.R. 5111, the “Consumer Review Fairness Act of 2016”. The legislation, which passed both houses of congress at the start of December, “makes certain clauses of a form contract void if it prohibits, or restricts, an individual from engaging in a review of a seller’s goods, services, or conduct.”

This is a big win for consumers. There have been a rash of incidents over the past couple of years in which companies attempt to stifle negative user reviews with “gag clauses” that threaten legal action and punitive monetary damages. The Union Street Guest House in Hudson, New York, for example, threatened a wedding party with $500 fines for every bad review the wedding’s guests left on Yelp. Now that the President has signed the bill, the FCC and states are empowered to take legal action against companies that don’t knock it off.

Read more from engadget here: https://www.engadget.com/2016/12/15/president-obama-signs-the-consumer-review-fairness-act-into-law/

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