The New Media Institute (NMI) is a research and fact finding organization whose mission is to improve public understanding of issues surrounding the Internet and other forms new media communications. NMI works directly with the news media, researchers, academics, government and industry professionals and serves as a primary resource of facts, statistics and analysis.
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Just as the internet is an excellent vehicle for companies to promote their goods and services, it can be an equally effective tool for dissatisfied customers or disgruntled employees to criticize a particular company or product.Much to the chagrin of trademark owners, such "hate" or "gripe" sites, which often include the company name or trademark in the url ([company]sucks.com) are very difficult, if not impossible, to shut down.The First Amendment typically shields the operators of corporate gripe sites from liability, unless they are selling products, deriving advertising revenue and/or in some other way engaged in "commercial" speech.
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Freedom of speech is generally acknowledged as a corner stone of a democracy and as crucial to the progressive development of a marketplace of ideas throughout the global community. The protection of freedom of speech is widely enshrined in international and domestic laws including the United States Constitution (First Amendment), the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 19), and The European Convention on Human Rights (Article 10).
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With todays highly mobile lifestyles, recessionary prone economy and mass infiltration of media into both our personal and professional lives, its no wonder that the results of traditional marketing methods are rapidly dwindling.