Nobody likes negative news articles concerning them. Whether a local publication or a national media company, it only takes one negative news article to smear your name and tarnish your online reputation. Keep reading to see how you can remove negative news articles from Google.
So, what can you do about it? Removing a news article with negative information – especially one you do not have access to – can be tricky. That said, there are some steps you can take to address these articles you wish to remove.
Why Do News Articles Rank Well in Google?
SEO (search engine optimization) is a complicated subject, and many factors affect how a web page performs in Google (or other search engines). However, here are the main reasons why a news article will rank well in a Google search:
Domain – the domain authority of a website helps news articles rank well. Many news publications have likely existed for years, and even decades online, which is why they typically have such high domain authority. Websites that have higher authority typically mean they will rank better in Google searches.
Date published – Google tends to favor newer content to display at the top of a search results page because it wants to show new and up-to-date results. So, for any negative news story that is recently published, it is much more likely to show up on Google than a news story that was published a few years ago.
Backlinks – if the article is linked to from other websites online, then this helps the article appear higher in search results. Articles from larger national news sites may be referenced more frequently by other sites when compared to smaller local publications.
Myth: News Articles Fall off of the First Page Over Time
While a news article could fall off the first page over time, it is not guaranteed. In some cases, a recent article ranking well could increase in position for a search (or search phrases) over time. Larger news stories that gain visibility quickly can also get links from other sites, which can quickly escalate a negative news story to rank first in Google.
Even if an article does fall, it’s difficult to predict when that will happen. Instead, it’s best not to leave this up to chance and take matters into your own hands.
Strategies to Remove Negative News Articles
Getting negative articles removed from Google is difficult, but it is possible. Following these options step-by-step can help you attempt to get the article taken down.
Fill Out Google’s DMCA Form
If the publishing journalist denies your request to remove or update the article, determine whether submitting a Google DMCA takedown notice is necessary.
DMCA stands for the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. If you own content that a journalist or media outlet has misused online, you can file a DMCA takedown notice with Google. This is a way to inform Google that they are hosting copyright-infringed content. As a result, Google will take down the news article following copyright law.
Reach out to the Journalist to Remove or Update the News Article
Use tools like Email Hunter to find a journalist’s name and email. Then, send an email to the journalist explaining the reason why you wish the journalist either remove or update the article. Site any inaccuracies to further your point.
Contact the Parent Company of the News Organization
Parent media companies that own local newspapers also accept removal requests and some have committees that review requests to remove names, articles, photos, or videos from their sites. Here is an example of a content removal requests form for NJ.com which states that they “recognize and respect the right to be forgotten movement that allows people to request the removal of online content that reflects negatively on them, causing them embarrassment or reputational harm or making it difficult for them to gain employment.” To address those requests in a fair and consistent manner they formed a content removal committee to consider such requests.
Generate Positive News
This strategy involves search engine suppression, or creating new content to rank higher and push down the negative new articles in Google. To generate positive news, think about ways to engage in positive stories that news outlets could pick up the story and publish online. Then, reach out to a few publishers to see whether they would cover the story. With positive press articles published, they may outrank the negative articles when someone searches for your name.
Content Suppression to Remove Negative News Articles
In addition to generating positive news online, there are additional ways to suppress negative news articles. Consider the following ways to bump down negative news articles:
Create social media accounts – there are several platforms to join
Create a website – consider creating a website that uses your name (personal or business name) as the domain
Create a Wikipedia article – for businesses or celebrities that are missing a Wikipedia article, this is a great way to push down negative new articles in Google – though it can take time to get your Wikipedia page approved by site moderators.
Publish an article on Medium – this is a great platform that can rank very well, considering the article your write is high-quality, and targets the search term of the article you wish to push down or remove.
Find guest post opportunities – websites and news publications accept posts by guest authors outside of their organization.
Hire an Online Reputation Management Company
If all else fails, know that there are professionals with plenty of experience suppressing or removing articles. If you have tried these strategies, a company specializing in online reputation management can help quickly remove an article with negative news that could damage your image.
Knowing When to Call a Professional
Many people may not know what a reputation management agency is, or what they do, but they are professionals in maintaining online reputation.
A Reputation Crisis
If you’re experiencing a crisis, it is recommended that you reach out to a professional who can address this quickly and effectively. A personal reputation crisis can damage your online image and what your peers think about you. Similarly, not addressing a business crisis reputation puts your bottom line at risk, losing revenue for every minute an article remains live online.
You’ve Tried Everything
If you’ve been dealing with a negative article and have tried the above strategies, you can hire a reputation management agency to remove or suppress the article.
Reputation911 Can Help Address Negative News Articles
We’ve seen many cases where negative news articles can damage your reputation. At Reputation911, our firm can help remove or suppress negative news and maintain your online perception.
We are a reputation management company that helps to make you Look Good Online.