First this happened to a client -- and now it has happened in a slightly different configuration to me. We have become victims of a classic protection scam.
You know -- the hire us to keep bad things from happen. But in this case the nuance is the bad things happened -- and it is pays us to stop the pain.
The slums of the internet are populated with so called "Consumer Protection" sites where some unverified anonymous person can come on and bash your company and your reputation. When you contact the company they flood you with a defiant list of legal precedent that shows they can keep it up.
Someone of the worse then blatantly say that they will take down posts that are proven false. When you ask them where you should send the proof they say -- oh it will cost $15,000 to launch the investigation. WTF?
Of course you can contact one of the companies on the website that claim they can protect your reputation. They either send legal letters to the company or they try to flood the internet with positive posts to bury the offending post. There are problems with both of these models.
The first is that the only lawyers that the BSCS responds to are those that they want to (I smell a behind-the-scenes relationship-- are they the same company?)
And in the second model -- yes, you can enter into a permanent relationship to flood the internet with things to push offending post out of the top ranked searches -- but it distracts from your real content and you are competing against a company whose livelihood is high ranking -- so it is very expensive.
Meanwhile I have a client that loses customers because of a re-printing of a irresponsible "news" paper article that slander them -- without posting the follow-up information
And I can't afford the price of either paying the tribute or for someones to bash their kneecaps. Meanwhile my kneecaps really hurt.
How do we shut these scum-buckets down? And what do you do to respond?