Defamation is the making of a false statement concerning a person or business that damages that person’s or business’s reputation. If a false statement is made and that person or business’s reputation is damaged, there can be legal consequences for the person who made the statement. Defamation applies to both written and oral statements that are published to third parties including the posting of material on the Internet. Defamation can either be a statement that is verbal or written. If a defamatory statement is made verbally, it’s called slander. If a defamatory statement is published in writing, it’s called libel.