💢 The company that sued over a rating

Ratings are everywhere these days, from Uber trips to “best of” lists to requests to grade customer service agents. Are these ratings adjustable, or are they more like a permanent record? A Connecticut lawsuit helped us find out.

  • NetScout Systems, Inc. didn’t even get that bad of a rating: In a market research report released by Gartner Inc., NetScout, a publicly traded company that helps government and telecommunications clients monitor network performance, was described as a “challenger,” which was one peg below a “leader,” in its industry.  

  • But the company thought the fix was in: Gartner had invited to NetScout to purchase its market research services, but NetScout declined. So it filed a lawsuit, suggesting Gartner had concocted a pay-to-play scheme in which it gave preferential ratings to buyers.

Behold the power of the First Amendment

Gartner made the case a constitutional issue, arguing it was using its freedom of expression. The Connecticut Supreme Court agreed, siding with Gartner and arguing NetScout didn’t provide sufficient evidence to show any pay-to-play.    

The Verdict 

Whether you’re a massive conglomerate or 2-star rated Uber passenger, don’t expect your rating to get changed anytime soon. Permanent records, FTW.