$10M Lawsuit Accuses Consumer Advocacy Site Of Coercion

Law360, San Francisco (December 14, 2016, 9:29 PM EST) -- Exercise equipment company Icon Health & Fitness Inc. has hit ConsumerAffairs.com with a $10.5 million racketeering and defamation suit in Utah federal court, alleging the review site rewards fee-paying members with good ratings and coerces nonpaying companies like Icon with negative reviews, according to a Tuesday filing.

Icon, which manufactures exercise equipment such as NordicTrack and Pro-Form, alleges the consumer news and resource website uses a variety of subtle methods to steer readers toward its members. According to the complaint, there is no transparency about the method by which ConsumerAffairs determines the star rating for a brand or chooses which reviews...

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