Once It’s Out There, You Can’t Take it Back … Or Can You?

There are several things I have learned over the years about the internet.  Not everything you read on the internet is true and not everything you SAY on the internet can be deleted.

For instance, Reggie Bush of the Saints tweeted the following during the NFL lockout a couple of years ago:

“Everybody complaining about the lockout!  Shoot I’m making the most of it! Vacation, rest, relaxing, appearances here and there!  I’m good!”

“Right about now we would be slaving in 100 degree heat, practicing twice a day, while putting our bodies at risk for nothing.”

Bet he wishes he could take that back.

Larry Johnson of the Kansas City Chiefs ripped head coach Todd Haley in October 2009 after Kansas City fell to 1-6 after a blowout loss to the Chargers:

“My father got more credentials than most of these pro coaches. … Google my father!!!!!!!”

“My father played for the coach from “remember the titans.” Our coach played golf.  My father played for redskins briefley. Our coach. Nuthn’”

Think he got into hot water with that tweet.

Imagine you are a financial advisor.  You work for or with an associate that scams individuals out of money and gets investigated.  A posting of this on the internet stays forever in cyberspace.

Someone wanting to do business with you typically turns on their computer and performs a Google search.  There, within seconds, are hundreds of articles, blogs and tweets about you and this other company… and the fraud that company committed.  By association, you suffer tremendous hardship and you are done, out of business, ruined.

There is no delete button for the internet.

Well, there are a few things you can do.  You can contact the webmaster of the page that the information is posted and request he/she remove the page.  This may work but usually this is very difficult to do. Search engines such as Google do not have the ability to remove content and thus the content is there forever and can be searched.  There is hope, though.  I saw an article which discussed a company called Reputation.com.  This company doesn’t take down the content but is able to push it down when a search is performed so it isn’t at the top of the hit list.

With reputation management always a priority in social media strategies… this is good information to know!


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