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The Business Of Burying Internet Search Results

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Ben Quayle

Ben Quayle is running for Congress in Arizona. But his campaign has suffered, in part, from the prominent ranking of Internet search results that detailed his contributions to an adult website.

Matt York / AP

Unseen battles are waged every day on the Internet to protect and destroy brands and reputations.

The Internet can be a hostile place, with powerful companies paying handsome sums to hide negative content in Google search results or any quest for information that might hurt their bottom line.

Earlier this year, Fionn Downhill, the CEO of the digital marketing agency Elixir Interactive, had an image problem. An angry customer launched an attack campaign on the Internet by posting a blog that accused Downhill of stealing the client’s money.

If you typed Elixir Interactive into Google, the blog was on top of the search results. And the blog made its point in capital letters—it said do not do business with Downhill's company.

"The person who did this knows exactly what they’re doing because they knew exactly how to make this present in a very damaging way," Downhill says.

From National Public Radio
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