Defamation implies some willful action against the company and its brand. Disparagement can result from the spread of popular stories and myths and may or may not be the result of actions taken by the company. Either way, the financial and economic impact can be substantial.
‘Defamation’ is defined as “the act of making untrue statements about another which damages his/her reputation. If the defamatory statement is printed or broadcast over the media it is libel and, if only oral, it is slander” (www.dictionary.law.com). ‘Disparage’ is defined as “to speak of or treat slightingly; to bring reproach or discredit upon, lower the estimation of” (www.dictionary.reference.com).
Read our article “Estimating and managing the economic impact of brand disparagement” published in World Trademark Review.