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Old 09-28-2016, 04:59 AM   #21
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@Sealife:

As a 'Professional' don't let your accreditation fool you into a superiority complex. My experience with 'society' membership is: A week class, and a fee does not a professional make.

It is not solely the CV that shows competence. As you know from your other interactions there are degreed professionals who show varying degrees of competence as well as incompetence in their fields of endeavor.

Having only paid for one survey in my life, only to justify flying to buy a boat a thousand miles away, a survey is only as good as the person doing it. Accreditation or not.

Personally, I have 45 years working on commercial vessels and yachts. One of the most difficult things to accept (especially if you have a license) is: Not every 'Captain' is equal. Neither is a surveyor. To state otherwise shows na´vetÚ.

That said, after actually reading most of them, commenters on this forum display their aggregate experience totaling millions of miles of cruising experience. I'd rather look for their comments than a 'Society' member of unknown quantity.
Want to discuss abyc vs abbc vs rys? That's another conundrum.
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Old 09-28-2016, 05:22 AM   #22
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All that is given on line is OPINION from an individual.

The joy is other folks can take exception , and post their different opinion.

The rational and logic can be judged by the OP , and he can decide if his question was answered.

Opinions vary , which is why Howard Johnson has all those ice cream flavors.
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Old 09-28-2016, 07:24 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by BruceK View Post
But, that`s all far too serious. Look at all the input on a issue, and make your own decision. If you prefer the advice of the unqualified over the advice of the qualified, that`s your choice. Based on the above, if he`s wrong and you suffer loss he`s off the hook and was probably never on it.
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For the most part, forum owners and moderators in the United States are protected by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which states that "no provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider."

Their immunity was upheld in several court cases especially when the TOS of the forum were very clear. TOS can be considered as a contract which has the force of law between the contracting parties and consequently produces effects.
Ok dear people, we have the the (unofficial but valued) opinion, of not one, but two lawyers there, so I hope we are all satisfied we will not end up on the end of a law suit because we came on here, and offered up a bit of often hard won advice, an anecdote, or the benefit of some bitter or expensive experience. Thanks to both of you gentlemen, we can now get back to chewing the fat, as they say, (whoever 'they' were), and without anxiety.
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Old 09-28-2016, 07:45 AM   #24
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And to the OP, don't take this the wrong way but being a certified anything doesn't mean squat to me.

Yeah, mostly the same for me, too... especially in anonymous interaction over the 'net. Just 'cause some distant typist claims credentials doesn't even mean that's true, let alone whether typist's advice is legit or not.

Might be different in person. Choosing between advice from two different guys -- face to face -- I might lend a bit more credence to the credentialed guy. Or not, depending.

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Old 09-28-2016, 08:01 AM   #25
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I wonder what the liability would be if one commissions surveys on a boat and rejects it, for some reason, then passes on the names, problems and locations of all involved in a forum?

Let's say for example that I see someone on this forum that is interested in purchasing the boat I just decided against. Should I tell everyone my experiences?
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:07 AM   #26
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I wonder what the liability would be if one commissions surveys on a boat and rejects it, for some reason, then passes on the names, problems and locations of all involved in a forum?

Let's say for example that I see someone on this forum that is interested in purchasing the boat I just decided against. Should I tell everyone my experiences?
While maybe not strictly illegal, my feeling would be that doing that would be bad form, sir...just not cricket, you know...

Also, if a proper survey, the surveyor could well claim a breech of confidentiality, in that a survey is usually only for the benefit of the individual who commissioned and paid for it. Hard to enforce, though...
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:12 AM   #27
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To get back to the OP's question regarding liability- To those in the legal community, does any one know of any case where advice given on a forum has lead to a lawsuit, or even the threat of a lawsuit?

I sense in his question a fear of such a situation. But as this non-lawyer understands the law, putting a successful case together would be dang near impossible.

So any case law out there? I bet not.

Not the same situation as a hired pro such as a surveyor getting pinged for an error or omission...
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:39 AM   #28
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Just wondering about the liability involved with giving "advice" online. Being a surveyor and ABYC certified master tech, I see way too many "contributors" without a clue. Wouldn't be hard to go back in the event of a loss and prove who the contributor was. Is there a blanket disclaimer when you join these forums stating such? I just get tired of arguing with clueless idiots, and give up.

Unfortunately most people looking for advice do so because they are trying to save a buck, and the cheapest/easiest suggestions always seem to be taken.
Sealife,

Good thought, but you have a response from the community.

Agree on the clueless idiots, but fortunately there's not many. Some of the folks that look like clueless idiots just guess at the answer/solution to a post without really much experience or knowledge... perhaps they had one experience, when others have had thousands. When we read the responses it's prudent to figure out who had the one experience and who had the thousands, and who is more likely credible.

As for the liability... anyone can be sued. Likely? Probably not. I could argue to add a disclaimer to your signature.

As for credentials... yes they have value. Be it a surveyor, doctor, boat captain or mechanic... all have value, and I'd take the one with credentials every time if all other considerations are equal. But we all know there's good and bad in everything, so we go a step further and get references and looked at their results.

Making major decisions from internet verbiage along is probably foolish, but it could easily lead to major decisions, and one can be enlightened with ideas or thoughts that were never apparent. So, give all the info you can, you may help out a fellow member, and don't worry about the liability. Just don't be the guy that spouts out information or advise that's not without reasonable fact.

Overall, I find forums VERY informational, and I've learned a TON of stuff and make decisions often that stemmed from the information, and have gotten better products and better services because of forums. I would hate to see the end of forums cause by legal BS.
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:39 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by seasalt007 View Post
I wonder what the liability would be if one commissions surveys on a boat and rejects it, for some reason, then passes on the names, problems and locations of all involved in a forum?

Let's say for example that I see someone on this forum that is interested in purchasing the boat I just decided against. Should I tell everyone my experiences?
Agreed, bad form. More appropriate for a PM.
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:49 AM   #30
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To get back to the OP's question regarding liability- To those in the legal community, does any one know of any case where advice given on a forum has lead to a lawsuit, or even the threat of a lawsuit?
Ben Ezra, Weinstein & Co. v. America Online, 206 F.3d 980, 984-985 (10th Cir. 2000), cert. denied, 531 U.S. 824 (2000).
Immunity for AOL was upheld against liability for a user's posting of incorrect stock information :

America Online (AOL) was sued for providing wrong information about Ben Ezra, Weinstein, & Co.'s stock. AOL was not considered a content-creator simply by editing stock quotations or corresponding with a third-party provider to correct errors. Because third-party companies "alone created the stock information at issue," AOL could not be held liable for defamation when it displayed the stock quotes on its site.

Ski in NC, please look at the following link from my DropBox.

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/dnusp06v0...zU_UAqd5a?dl=0
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:56 AM   #31
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Ok, tread creep it is. I posted SOME of my credentials to put perspective on the question. I thought it might matter as related to the question. For instance I also hold a 100 ton license. That does make a difference if I were ever to be in an accident vs. before I was licensed. I knew the surveyor bit would get heavy fire, as I see it come up all the time. I dont even get involved with the defense of survey bashing mostly. boatpoker must have learned this long ago. I agree mostly with everyone's comments about credentials. I had the experience and became tired of dealing with people that knew less, etc. In those situations, at a professional and legal level, credentials make the difference. I am sure there are alot of people here with more experience in a lot of things than me. Fine, not the point. The clueless idiots is a general statement, alot of which has to do with a different forum. Notice I did not post this thread there, as I feel this group is better.

Thank you to the people that have intelligently tried to help with my concern.
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Old 09-28-2016, 09:59 AM   #32
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I agree that there is some really bad advice posted on Internet forums. Some folks haven't got a clue yet it doesn't stop them from posting their interpretation of some thing they read somewhere.


There is good (and correct) advice posted also but if you don't know (and why else would you be asking?), how can you tell the good from the bad?


Liability for posting advice? I doubt it. It's no different than a conversation on the dock except it's on the Internet, not in person.
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:33 PM   #33
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What about the Liability from inaction?

On the DEEP End we have one poster that dreams of cutting the heads off anyone that disagrees with his politics.

Should he climb up a Texas Tower with a couple of bricks of ammo (1000 round box) and commence firing , can we be held liable for our inaction??
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:40 PM   #34
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FF, what the hell do politics have to do with any of this? They shape the laws....thats a stretch. Inaction liability, really?
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:41 PM   #35
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Quote:
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I wonder what the liability would be if one commissions surveys on a boat and rejects it, for some reason, then passes on the names, problems and locations of all involved in a forum?

Let's say for example that I see someone on this forum that is interested in purchasing the boat I just decided against. Should I tell everyone my experiences?
I think it probably would not get you in any legal trouble, but bad form indeed. You own the survey results and can do with it what you wish. Where you might get some flak is if a statement is made that might be interpreted as being less than accurate. Probably best kept on a private level.

I like analogies to sort through things. Here's what I came up with:

Let's say your ex-GF kicks puppies. You find out she is dating someone so you broadcast on the net that Ms. So and So kicks puppies. While accurate, it will incur her wrath. It then may put you in the position of having to defend your claim, which is not a fun nor productive place to be.
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Old 09-28-2016, 12:50 PM   #36
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Donna, TOS? Excuse my ignorance, I'm pretty new to forums.
Not sure if this was ever explained fully. Any forum that I have been a part of has Terms of Service. In other words, TF provides a service to us that they don't charge for. However, when we signed up we were asked to agree with the TOS, which were linked from that page iirc. Over time we can sometimes forget about them but it is a way that the forum owner can reduce their own liability.

Way at the bottom of each page of the site is a link to the Terms of Service. You can find them here.
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:06 PM   #37
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No offense to the OP, but this whole thread strikes me as really funny. Because the advice is sometimes so very bad on the internet, the OP asks a legal question on an internet forum. Am I the only one who sees the hilarious contradiction in that?
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:12 PM   #38
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None taken, I am quite aware of the irony, which is why I appreciate being pointed in the right direction ie. TOS. Which BTW does have the liability disclaimer not only for the website but its members as well. The problem is all the shoot from the hip opinions that water down the intelligent exchange of information. I guess this is why the kids just use google these days...
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:19 PM   #39
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First, as to liability of the forum, virtually none. TOS and case law support that.

As to liability of individuals, only in rare circumstances which I've seen none of here.

The one place there can be individual liability here is in calling out professionals or businesses with the intent to harm, with information one knows to be false, and with real harm to their business occurring. As an example, if you falsely accused a marina owner of claiming to have ethanol free gas and it actually having ethanol and you knew that was a lie and that cost the marina business.

We have seen people sued and lose based on facebook posts and even more recently Yelp reviews where the intent was to cause harm to a business with publishing knowingly false information.

The other more recent liability from online posts is cyber bullying. That can rise to a criminal level. Example would be to say former boyfriend is HIV positive and all girls he's sleeping with have been exposed. Another is costing someone their job by making knowingly false claims, such as fired from previous job for embezzlement or has been arrested for drugs on numerous occasions.

Medical advice is an entirely different area and can be problematic if one represents themselves as a doctor and gives advice, while not being a doctor.

The only place I've seen here where I'd see any potential issue is where claims have been made against various professionals. If those claims are knowingly false, then there's liability.

As to just day to day advice, there is an assumption that you get what you pay for and since we all pay zero, then it's caveat emptor.

P.S. Encouraging one to do an illegal act, depending on the nature of that act, could carry liability.
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Old 09-28-2016, 01:22 PM   #40
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