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How can I get my ex to stop posting things online about me?

San Jose, CA |

My ex and his new girlfriend are posting things about me and to me online. They are using facebook and instagram to post stuff. So far nothing threatening. I did a wage assignment against my ex for a judgement I won and now he's angry and posting all over the internet. It show how immature they are, but I'd like it to stop

Attorney Answers 3

  1. You do not want to live in a society where the government shuts down speech just because someone does not like what's being said. Yes, its annoying that your former husband is writing about you. But until what he says crosses into unlawful speech -- that is, threats of physical violence, egregious disclosures of private facts, defamatory accusations -- he may lawfully write about you. BUT where he writes what he's writing has a say in this as well. So, for example, if what he's writing violates Facebook's community guidelines then Facebook can remove his offending posts [after all, they own their site]. Same with Instagram.

    So ... if what he's writing threatens you with physical violence then gather the posts and speak with the police. If what he's writing is an egregious violation of your privacy or is defamatory then speak with your own civil attorney. If what he's writing violates the forum's community guidelines then complain to the forum. Good luck.

    The above is general information ONLY and is not legal advice, does not form an attorney-client relationship, and should NOT be relied upon to take or refrain from taking any action. I am not your attorney. You should seek the advice of competent counsel before taking any action related to your inquiry.

  2. I disagree with Attorney Ballard. although his answer is an attempt to be helpful to you, as I think the place to go is to your family law attorney and petition for a Court order restraining this form of abuse and harassment. Certainly that has worked well for my clients here in Illinois. This sort of "flaming" is quite common in bitter family splitups. Going to the cops, website, or defamation attorney is not likely to produce as effective a solution. As to the cops, that's not going to be effective since you say there is nothing threatening. As to the defamation, I suspect what your ex and his new girl are positing are either embarrassing facts or opinions, perhaps protected by free speech. As to the website, since these are not copyright violations, you will have limited success, if any. Of course, the actual facts are critical and we are just making educated guesses as to the types of posts you mention. However, my experience with these issues in family law court is that the judges have no problem issuing a restraining order or injunction against harrassment of this sort and have no problem putting someone in contempt of that order if it continues. You can get a reasonably prompt hearing and just the thought and embarrassment for your ex and his new girl of having to appear in court to explain these posts will almost always put a stop to them as then there is more to lose than gain by continuing them, and it gets costly for them to defend themselves, if they can.

    I am not licensed in CA, but in TX where I am and which is a community property state with relatively similar family law practice, the family law angle has proven the better solution in my experience.

    I would also like to mention that such posts have a short lifetime and often are of limited or no long term effect. Sometimes, the better solution is to be the better person and just not respond at all. Often the purpose of "flaming" is to irritate you. If you don't appear irritated, either the poster stops in frustration or escalates in some fashion to attempt to get the desired reaction from you, and progresses to the point that additional remedies become available to you.

    Good Luck!

    Good Luck

    I am not your lawyer and you are not my client. Free advice here is without recourse and any reliance thereupon is at your sole risk. This is done without compensation as a free public service. I am licensed in IL, MO, TX and I am a Reg. Pat. Atty. so advice in any other jurisdiction is strictly general advice and should be confirmed with an attorney licensed in that jurisdiction.

  3. If the posting is in violation of the website’s user agreement and posting rules, the site will remove any embarrassing content upon proper verification by the victim. If someone has posted material with intent to embarrass, intimidate, or harm you, the posting might constitute online harassment. Visit your state’s websites to find if there is online harassment law.

    Invasion of privacy is unreasonable intrusion upon the seclusion of another, appropriation of someone's name or likeness, unreasonable publicity given to someone's private life, or publicity that unreasonably puts someone in a false light before the public. Plaintiffs suing for invasion of privacy must be able to show that the action resulted in some kind of harm to their interests. The unwarranted appropriation or exploitation of one’s personality, the publicizing of one’s private affairs with which the public has no legitimate concern, or the wrongful intrusion into one’s private activities, in such manner as to outrage or cause mental suffering, shame, or humiliation to a person of ordinary sensibilities. False light cases are about damage to a person's personal feelings or dignity, whereas defamation is about damage to a person's reputation. Public disclosure of private facts occurs when a writer discloses private and embarrassing facts about a living person that are not of public concern.

    This is not a legal advice or solicitation, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Consult an attorney- an Internet, Technology & Communications Law Attorney.

    This is not a legal advice or solicitation, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Consult an attorney.