We would like to update CW members, along with our supporters, of the latest exchange with Atos. (Having trouble with wordpress so cannot link back to other posts which details this situation. Will try later)
Received from Atos
Thank you for your email. The posting which we consider to be defamatory against Atos Healthcare and our employees is dated March 23rd, 8:51 pm.
As I said in my previous email, we fully support the right of people to express their opinions and would very much like to work with you to ensure your forum is reinstated as soon as possible.
If you have further questions, please do call me on: *********.
Our response below
Thank you for supplying the date and time of the post that concerns you.
We have finally traced it. We run a live discussion group and posts are normally only current for a few days. In this case the post is five months old. It did not create any interest at the time and has long since become inactive.
Having seen the post we are even more confused as to why you took this aggressive action against us. We were surprised to see that this post was not written by a member of CarerWatch but is merely a link to an article on another site. We were also surprised when we followed the link to see that the original article is still visible on the site of origin. We cannot understand why you would take this matter up with us when your dispute is with the authors of the linked article. We feel like collateral damage in this.
We would like to point out that we are running a private discussion group for members and we do not know how you saw this link on our site. But if you have some how been watching the posts in our group you will know that members post on an enormous breadth of topics and post links to a wide variety of other sites. Members often post links to material on other sites precisely because they are vehemently opposed to the material.
We repeat – this is a discussion group and posts have to be read in the context of open discussion.
We are concerned that this type of extreme hyper vigilance of discussion groups could seriously damage free and open discussion.
You say that you embarked on this action to protect the reputation of your company. But you can call on unlimited resources to obtain legal advice and you should bear in mind that groups like us have no resources and cannot obtain legal advice. We think you should bear this in mind when making your actions proportionate and appropriate.
We are sure you, like us, wish to bring this situation to a speedy conclusion. As it was your action that resulted in our forum being taken down, we suggest the following. We will remove the post in question (without prejudice), and in turn you will make arrangements to have our forum reinstated, whilst also giving us a guarantee that should you have any concerns in future, you will bring them directly to us and not to the hosting company.
Considering the immense distress caused to our members, and the volume of unnecessary work created for us, we consider these to be extremely reasonable requests.
We await your reply.