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Old 06-27-2006   #1
scratch
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Angry Negative Info/Personal Harm

I'm not sure if this is the appropriate place to ask this, and if it is not, I apologize ahead of time. I have looked around, this seemed best.

I've got a newspaper article floating out there (from a very small paper) that contains some negative information on me. It is highly inaccurate, but since it is now out there on Google, it is really harming me personally and professionally. When someone searches my name, the article comes up always on the first page of Google.

I should also say that the paper is claiming first amendment rights, and therefore doesn't have to take the article down (since someone gave them information--even though it was wrong). I'm considering legal action, but that will take a long time. I need to effectively bury this article. Can anyone give me a few suggestions?

Last edited by scratch : 06-27-2006 at 10:13 AM.
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Old 06-27-2006   #2
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Generate Content and Links

You will need to "counter the attack."

If I were you, I would:

1. Build a personal website.
2. Make sure you link the content pages well using your name as much as possible in the link text
3. Start building strong inbound links
4. Create articles and publish, with links back to home site
5. Supplement with some bolg posts but sparingly as today offers little value in SEO because of spam

Basically, you will need to build more relevant and stronger content than your critic, with your name in the content or, with your name in the links.

Shouldn't be to difficult unless you have a very popular name!
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Old 06-27-2006   #3
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Fastest Way

This is the fastest way, but it might not blow all of it off the first page.

Write a positive press release about you or your business using your name, go to prweb.com and pay at least 100 bucks to get good placement. It should be picked up by a handful of content news sites.
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Old 06-27-2006   #4
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1. Do not fan the fire - the more attention you give it the more likely it will grow.

2. Build your own site (and/or a blog - the more sites you have the better). You may get creative with sub domains. Do not talk about the negative article!

3. Optimize your site for the general searches the article comes up for.
If the article is about "John Doe is a Dork" obviosuly a search user would find it if thats what they were looking for no matter what you do.

4. Get links to the site/blog (both) with the keywords the article comes up for.

5. Link to every web document you find about you from your site(s).

6. Do the press release thing mentioned above - the distribution is awesome.

7. Give it time.
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Old 06-27-2006   #5
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I would definitely counter the attack as previously suggested. Since it's an article, it should be pretty easy to make that article drop in rankings by getting favorable pages with your name on it to rank higher.

You'll need to get links to pages that contain your name. Here's some pages you could work on:
- write articles and make sure you have a bio or a bio page.
- post on forums using your name as your member name (your name will be in posts and it will be in a profile).
- make your own site (get your name in the domain name or in part of the domain name)
- start a blog using your name on several different blog hosts
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Old 06-27-2006   #6
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Listen to the advice here. It's solid.

I just want to reiterate that you'll need multiple sites performing for your name. If you just build a personal page, that will just push the offending article down to the second spot. You need to push it down to the eleventh spot to get it off the first page.
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Old 06-27-2006   #7
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So far, you all seem to have great knowledge here, and I'm getting some comfort in the fact that it seems like I will be able to move this thing. Obviously, being very new to this, I've got some research to do on link building, but I do thank you for the tips thus far (and I'll continue to read and take others).
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Old 06-27-2006   #8
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The registering usernames in your real name is a great one. There's a support ticket/post that I submitted to W3C's validator team that comes up first page for my name now.
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Old 06-28-2006   #9
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You might want to simply build some one-way links to other non-offending pages that are already in the top-10 or so. This may not be permanent without maintenance but it should work very quickly.
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Old 06-28-2006   #10
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Ok...so, if I do this:

1) Build 8-10 web sites of 5-6 pages each.
2) Link to various places on the web that use my name, and place that link anywhere in the various web sites I build.
3) Somehow link back to my 8-10 sites from other sites (I'm still learning on this one)
4) Post in blogs and put out press releases using my name (and then of course link to whatever publications/places pick up my articles)

This is a start...do I have a good start? Anything vital I'm missing? And lastly, will each page on the various sites show up in the engine (as results), or just the entire site?
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Old 06-28-2006   #11
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It will be interesting to see of this works. If these sites show up all at once, followed a sudden influx of anchor-rich links, you may find that these sites won't rank even for a non-competitive term like your name, for quite a while. Please keep us posted on the outcome.
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Old 06-28-2006   #12
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John raises a very good point. You might be better served by rolling out the sites over a number of months.
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Old 06-30-2006   #13
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What about strong, non-article, ranking websites

What steps should you take if a site such as ripoffreport.com -run by an extortionist- gets top rankings for your company name or keywords?? Some of these pages have a PR5 so it is not quite as easy to push out of rankings like a negative article. Any further suggestions on this type of slander?

-Mark Barrera
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Old 06-30-2006   #14
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Google Coop Profile page ... +

Amen to all the above.

In addition setup a short profile page using your name on:

- Google Coop - really effective - it took only 2 weeks to rank #1 on G for my name which is unigue, but G lists in their index 1,200 occurances of my name, searched in quotes. My G coop profile ranks #1.

- List yourself using your name (+ your website) in as many Internet directories as possible. It will give you sort of a "profile" page on each directory. I found that the following directories listing pages rank high on Google. Some are free some are paid.

- Business – Paid
- Alivedirectory – Paid
- Wowdirectory – Paid
- Exactseek – Paid
- BOTW - Paid
- Thisisyouryear
- Joeant – Paid
- Gimpsy – Paid
- Netinsert
- Whatyouseek
- Craigslist
- judysbook
- superpages
- zoominfo

I feel your pain. Good luck.

Marek
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Old 06-30-2006   #15
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Possible Easy Solution?

I am at a start-up called Naymz which was created to help with this exact problem. With the growth of user-generated content with sites like MySpace, FaceBook, Flickr, etc., more and more people are getting information indexed by Google that they don’t necessarily want to be found. We allow you to build a profile page about yourself which contains links to sites that ARE factually about you. You can also add a category of links that aren’t you but contain your name. We will then add this profile page to the indexes of the major search engine. We also offer a premium service in which we can guarantee first page placement for your profile through the use of sponsored results on Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc.

I hope this isn’t perceived as spam. To keep it honest, there are also other sites such as ClaimID and Ziggs which offer similar solutions. We just launched a few weeks ago, so I would love to hear any feedback or questions you have about the service.
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Old 06-30-2006   #16
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Naymz

I wanted to jump in (and finally register here) and let you know about a site some friends have mine have recently launched specifically to address this issue. It's called Naymz and makes it very easy for people to set up a well optimized profile page for free and PPC accounts for a monthly fee.

There are a fair amount of pages out there for my name (350K+ on Google) and the Naymz page I set up a month ago is already outranking my MySpace and Friendster profiles which have been there for years.

Last edited by Chris Boggs : 06-30-2006 at 01:59 PM. Reason: removed link to naymz, as it is live in post just above
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Old 07-01-2006   #17
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Cool Unwanted results

My client has no trouble being found on the search engines. Her problem is that results come up for gay sports events she's participated in and she wishes they didn't. She's concerned it will have a negative effect on her business and she's probably right. Her business is really taking off and she wants to branch out globally selling her book and doing speaking engagements.

I wondered if the search engines have a payable service to remove these "unwanted" results.

Thanks for any tips you have on this scenario.
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Old 07-02-2006   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmcg
My client has no trouble being found on the search engines. Her problem is that results come up for gay sports events she's participated in and she wishes they didn't. She's concerned it will have a negative effect on her business and she's probably right. Her business is really taking off and she wants to branch out globally selling her book and doing speaking engagements.
That sounds like quite a surpressive country she lives in, where is she from?

I would look at this from a positive angle - how can I promote this great new book for my client so that people searching for her will find it. If enough publicity is made about your client "The Author", old and stale results about the woman as "The Sportsman" will start to drop down the results until they're at a point where no-one ever sees them. Maybe partner up with a PR company that has experience in promoting book tours and authors, they'll be able to get your client mentioned on high-profile news and magazine websites which will immediately start to outrank small-time newspaper and village gazzette sports articles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pmcg
I wondered if the search engines have a payable service to remove these "unwanted" results.
Not as far as I'm aware, this would be unethical due to the circumstances in which search engines are prepared to remove pages. If you're worried about certain pages, politely ask the website hosting the page to remove the article and explain her situation - maybe if a generic news site, offer a free replacement article about the author in return for removal. Once the website owners have removed the page, you can then approach the engines and ask them to remove the page from their results and cache.

On the other side of the fence, a mate of mine has a great site about Mediaworks Group Limited and their old boss Stephen Morris.

HTH

Rob

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Old 07-02-2006   #19
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Quote:
We also offer a premium service in which we can guarantee first page placement for your profile through the use of sponsored results on Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc.
Noone can guarantee a first page placement in any search results - not even the paid sponsor listings. All you can do is gurantee that you won't charge for your service if it dosn't happen - not that it WILL happen!

Also, having a sponsorlisting for your own name is not going to remove any of the listings you don't like. And it's so easy to set up that one add with your name that anyone can do it - I hardly see any need for a service to do that

Quote:
I wondered if the search engines have a payable service to remove these "unwanted" results.
No, they only remove illegal content and it's (usually) not illegal to say bad things about other people. Especially if those "bad" things are actually true - or if it is expressed as personal opinions Search engines are not going to remove listings just because you don't like them - and I don't think they should.
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Old 07-03-2006   #20
Nick Naymz
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Mikkel,

Thanks for your comments and questions about our service.

I should have expounded a bit more on “guaranteed first page placement” for our premium service. On Yahoo we can 100% guarantee first page placement as CTR is not factored into ranking (at least not until the new platform rolls out this fall). As you know, AdWords can be a bit more tricky. Currently less than 1% of names had more than 4 sponsored result advertisers in AdWords. Most names have no advertisers. This means that 99%+ of our paid subscriber’s names won’t get pushed to the second page regardless of CTR. For the very small percentage of subscribers that we cannot get first page placement for, we will absolutely offer a full refund.

For a search marketing expert like yourself, it would certainly be easy to go create new campaigns on AdWords, Yahoo, and MSN AdCenter for your name. It would, however, also take a good chunk of time to set everything up from scratch (keywords, copy, credit cards, budget, etc). Our service allows you to set-up your sponsored result for your name, create a profile page, and be posted in Google in a matter of minutes. We also offer a couple of other cool features such as detailed reporting on how many people visited your profile page as well as a way for others to contact you.

You are right in that we definitely can’t take away pages about you in the SERP’s. We can give you a voice in those results, however.

A couple of weeks ago here in the States, CBS News reported that “77% of recruiters have used search engines to uncover information about candidates and 35% of recruiters have eliminated a candidate based on information found online.” Based on these numbers alone I feel that our service would be of value to many professionals.

Here are some other fun facts about search engine users according to an MSN/Harris Interactive Poll:
• 36% track down long-lost friends
• 23% search for the name of a business associate or colleague prior to meeting them
• 29% research family members
• 20% look for old flames


Thanks,
Tom

Tom Drugan
Co-Founder
Naymz.com

Last edited by Nick Naymz : 07-03-2006 at 11:30 AM.
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