The online review company is reviled among many small business owners who accuse it of running an extortion racket, but suing Yelp over negative reviews is not likely to lead anywhere. One Washington state locksmith learned that the hard way today after a federal appeals court sided with Yelp in a lawsuit over a one-star review, which the locksmith said ruined his business.
Douglas Kimzey spent years in court claiming Yelp purposely sabotaged his business in an attempt to bully him into advertising. The courts didn't buy the extortion charge, and because Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act shields websites from the actions of their users, Yelp couldn't be held liable for the negative review, which dated back to 2011.
Yelp has emerged victorious in numerous lawsuits over negative reviews. Just save yourself the filing fee.