SEO tactic buries bad news, raises ethical questions

A question I am being asked more frequently is "Is there a way to make an unflattering Internet mention of you or your firm disappear?"

A question I am being asked more frequently is “Is there a way to make an unflattering Internet mention of you or your firm disappear?”

The answer is technically “no,” as that would be like getting rid of a condo in Ft. Lauderdale. From a practical standpoint, the answer is, you can make the unflattering mention very difficult to find. Using methods of DSEO (defensive search engine optimization) one can “bury” the negative comments in a digital fog bank that will bring scads of positive comments to the forefront and make finding the “bad” words very difficult to spot.

This is another important tool in the public reputation management toolbox. A brand is a firm or a company's most valuable asset. When it is threatened by a bad review, a negative link, or a malicious blog post, DSEO can neutralize the negativity.

All this is fine and good, but what about the ethical considerations? Is that the way the Internet was intended to be used and does DSEO take place within the open spirit of Web 2.0? DSEO is expensive, so does that give a marketplace advantage to the haves versus the have-nots? So, I begin and end with some big questions. Let me know what you think.

Jay Jaffe, president/CEO, Jaffe PR

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