In a world where EVERYTHING leaves a digital footprint, sometimes a favorable resolution to a situation may not be enough to preserve the current or future interests of a professional or job seeker. As news outlets change their operations and methods for relaying the news & keeping a nearly permanent catalogue of information available, for people who have been on the receiving end of bad press, that becomes a stain that follows them around much longer than the situation they were involved in does. The options to address such a situation are very limited and none of them are completely sure fire.
- Contact the Source of the Article- In a perfect world, this would be all that it takes to have such a situation resolved. Specifically, if this is a legal situation where the court dismisses or acquits a person of an alleged crime. Unfortunately, this simple and sensible resolution is very elusive & many publications view themselves as “local historians” or “gatekeepers of truth”. The favorable disposition in a court situation SHOULD have an effect on the presence of an article and SHOULD work towards that information being a little harder to find.
- Use an Online Reputation Program- If you are unable to gain any traction through simple, upfront communication with a news source, you could hire or buy access to an online reputation program (BrandYourself, DefamationDefender, etc.). These programs vary in price and effectiveness, but much of their operations are centered around Search Engine Manipulation (SEO/SERP). These have varied levels of success and many of them take many months.
- Hire an Attorney- Lastly, you could retain an attorney to contact these outlets. This type of representation is usually pretty highly specialized and as a result, very expensive. If your situation allows you to do this, that is great, but it will set you back a couple thousand dollars at least.
Obviously, this situation hits very close to home to me and this is a battle I have continued to fight with very tempered success for almost a year now. The fallout from a situation that happened upon me has continued to bring harm to: my family, my career, and to me. Much of this stuff is an outlier to many situations, but this seems to be something that is occurring more often.