Q: Is is illegal to start a website that is created to allow users to publicly shame people based on certain situations?
This is strictly a conceptual idea and I have no intention of moving forward with this idea unless I understand the legalities.
A Virginia attorney could advise best, but your post remains open for two weeks. Until you are able to consult with a Virginia attorney, something more likely than any penal code violation would probably be civil liability for defamation. If the users post content that is harmful to someone's reputation, and the statements are false, the victim could bring an action for liable. But if the statements cross the line beyond ordinary dignitary interests and enter issues addressed in criminal statutes, then criminal liability could possibly arise, as a general premise. Good luck
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.