If a post on a message board owned by a company that is located in California contains language
that ridicules me and causes me great emotional distress, can I sue the company that
owns the website that the message board is on? The post has caused me so much distress that
I can't sleep at night, and if anyone puts my full name on to ANY search engine on the internet,
the post is the first thing at the top of the page. I asked the moderators of the website twice to
remove the post, and they refused. I asked the person who posted it twice to remove it, and he
did not. The company that owns the website is located in Sunnyvale, CA.
What you're describing doesn't fit the legal description of NIED. If the language is so extreme and outrageous as to form a basis for an intentional infliction of emotional distress cause of action, you still have a considerable burden of proof. Some civil attorneys threaten suit against people who post on message boards even if the communication appears to be protected by the First Amendment. You may want to call around, because whether you should pursue this depends upon details too numerous to address in a general question-and-answer forum.
I am not your attorney. Avvo and its users acknowledge that no attorney-client relationship is established by using avvo.com. Nothing published in this website constitutes actual legal advice. You should consult with an attorney of your choice who has experience in your inquired field of law. If you are in California and have questions about estate planning, I'd be happy to receive your call.
Sorry but NIED is very difficult to prove and wouldn't apply to online message boards anyway. Ridicule is not against the law. If they are making defamatory statements, threats, or infringing on your copyright then you could take legal action.
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